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Children rescued from ice heave on Lake Pepin

LAKE CITY -- What began as an attempt to take a scenic photo ended with Lake City police and fire departments responding to the shores of Lake Pepin after two children became trapped under a collapsed ice heave.

Police received a call at 5:26 p.m. Jan. 10 of a 3-year-old girl and 4-year-old boy trapped under a block of ice, which was estimated to be 10 feet long, 5 feet wide and 1 foot thick, which can weigh up to 3,000 pounds.

The children were posed by the ice heave for a photo when it collapsed, pinning them underneath, Lake City Police Sgt. Bill Weist said.

The children’s mother and uncle tried to free them and when they were unsuccessful called 911, he said.

Once on scene the fire department used lifting airbags – commonly used to free people stuck under cars – to lift the ice enough to free the children, Lake City Assistant Fire Chief Craig Sievers said.

“It was tense, but everybody did the job the way they were supposed to,” he said.

The children were stuck under the ice heave, which was on the shore just below the Skyline on Pepin Restaurant, for close to 20 minutes, Weist said.

The children were treated and have been released from the hospital, he added.

John R. Russett

John Russett is a regional reporter for RiverTown Multimedia, covering a variety of issues facing RiverTown communities. Previously, he worked at the Red Wing Republican Eagle, where he reported on education as well as crime and courts. 

You can follow him on Twitter at @JohnRyanRussett


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