The temperature is dropping more and more with each passing day, which means the open bodies of water we enjoyed during the summer will be frozen soon. That being said, drowning is just as big of a risk during the winter as it is in the summer, plus, there is the added danger of freezing temperatures. We’ve compiled some important safety information to help you avoid accidents on the ice this winter.

Prevent Ice Accidents: Factors to Watch Out For

  • Docks, logs, and rocks that could absorb heat from the sun and transfer it to the ice
  • Size and depth of the body of water
  • Fluctuations in water levels, watch out for man-made lakes that are fed by spillways
  • Tides and flowing water can cause inconsistent ice thickness
  • Changes in temperature and excessive sunlight that could compromise the ice thickness

Ice Safety: Thickness

Be aware of the thickness of the ice and what it means:

  • 15 cm minimum for individual walking or skating
  • 20 cm minimum for multiple people
  • 25 cm minimum for snowmobiling

Ice Colour

The colour of the ice often indicates how strong it is. Clear blue ice is usually the strongest, but still consider the other factors when determining if it’s safe or not. White ice, which is also known as snow ice, is half as strong as blue ice because it’s formed when wet snow freezes. Look out for grey ice; the grey colour indicates that there is water in the ice, which means it cannot support you, and it’s unsafe. People being unaware of the presence of water in grey ice is one of the main causes of ice accidents.

Accidents on The Ice

Even if you are well educated in ice safety, accidents can happen at any time to anyone. If you are alone and you fall through the ice into the water, your survival depends on you remaining calm. Try to relax and catch your breath so that you can call for help – you don’t want to be out of breath before you even attempt to get out yourself. Turn towards the shore because the ice will be thicker as you get closer to shore in most cases. Place your arms on the ice without pushing down, and try to kick your legs and get yourself out of the water horizontally. Once you get your body out of the water and onto the ice, do not stand! Crawl on your stomach or roll towards the shore. The key is to distribute your body weight across the largest surface area.

Protecting yourself from unexpected ice accidents can be as easy as getting
Accidental Death Insurance from Hudson’s Bay Financial Services.

Hudson’s Bay Financial Services is proud to offer affordable Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance through our partner Chubb Life.1 If you’re between 18 and 69 years old, you are guaranteed to be accepted with no medical questions or exams required for enrolment. In addition to easy enrolment, affordable group rates, and a 30-day satisfaction guarantee, you can earn 1,000 Hudson’s Bay Rewards points when you obtain a one-time, no-obligation quote, 2,000 Rewards points upon enrolment, and 4,000 Rewards points annually when you renew your coverage.2

1) Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance is arranged for by Hudson’s Bay Financial Services and underwritten by Chubb Life Insurance Company of Canada (“Chubb Life”). Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance is currently not available in Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Yukon, Quebec and Nova Scotia. Complete details of coverage, including definitions of covered accidents and any limitations or exclusions that apply, are set out in the Policy.

2) Earn 1,000 Hudson’s Bay Rewards points when you obtain a one-time, no-obligation Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance quote; 2,000 Rewards points upon approval; and 4,000 Rewards points annually.