GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WOOD) — Dozens of people walked on ice over Lake Michigan near the Grand Haven piers Monday, though police warned against it after three people fell through the ice over the weekend.
“We just wanted to get some pictures. I never seen it. I’m originally from Nashville, so I’ve never seen frozen water like that before especially on Lake Michigan,” beach-goer Amber Gredeius said.
Gredeius and her friend were walking on the lake almost past the lighthouse.
That’s where Brian Lemieux nearly drowned on Saturday.
“Before I knew it I was in the water,” Lemieux said. “No warning. That quick.”
He was out to take pictures of the sunrise. He only got one.
Lemieux said he was being careful and followed other people’s tracks. He found himself underwater anyway.
“Thankfully, I had my tripod, which was nice and sturdy and I think that caught on the hole, so I was able to find the hole fairly easily and get myself out,” Lemieux said.
He is one of three people who fell through the ice over the weekend.
Monday, some people walked on the iced-over lake far past the piers. Most people walked next to the south pier, figuring they would be safe there.
Holly Wilson said she was only a little worried.
“But we talked to a lot of people and saw that people were out here. We stayed along the pier. So we felt that it was OK,” Wilson said.
But Grand Haven police say even the well-travelled route next to the pier is not totally safe.
“There’s still going to be, like we talked about, cracks and fissures and some weak ice just from the different currents and turbulence of the water,” Grand Have police Sgt. Christopher Wright said.
“There was a lot of cracks in the ice. That’s why we turned around and came back. It was making some noises and it made us a little nervous,” Gredeius said.
Everyone who has fallen through the ice at Grand Haven has been rescued and is OK — but police say they are worried someone could die.