2 snowmobiles fall through ice on Fox River near Johnsburg

No injuries were reported after two snowmobiles and one of the two riders fell through the ice on the Fox River near Johnsburg Sunday afternoon.

The McHenry County Sheriff’s Office and the McHenry Township Fire Protection District responded to a call at 2:41 p.m. Sunday to the 4300 block of North Riverdale Drive, an unincorporated area with a McHenry address.

The rider who fell in the water was able to get out “without incident,” sheriff’s office communications specialist Emily Matusek-Baker said.

The rider was out of the water by the time first responders arrived, was assisted by paramedics and declined further care, fire district Chief Kevin Sears said.

Sears warns riders that ice melts unevenly, making it impossible to determine what areas are still solid on frozen waters.

“It is incredibly dangerous to ride a snowmobile on ice while there is still open water,” Sears said, “especially on a river.”

It is legal to drive snowmobiles on frozen public waters unless the rider is within 100 feet of another person or if the rider is on an area cleared of snow for skating purposes, according to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

“We don’t advocate for snowmobiles to ride anywhere other than the designated trails,” Sears said.

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