MAYFIELD, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Fulton County Emergency Management warned area residents Friday of a pressure ridge that has opened up on the Great Sacandaga Lake. There were multiple spots of open water along the pressure ridge, which stretched from just north of Lanzis all the way to the northeast of Deer Island.

It comes as snowmobile crashes have spiked across New York State this year, claiming the lives of some residents and prompting action from the New York State Snowmobile Association. Since the beginning of 2022, there have been at least six reported fatal crashes in the North Country alone.

Pressure ridges are especially dangerous for snowmobile operators and for ice fishermen. If you do have to cross one at some point while out on the ice, here are some suggestions:

  • Don’t cross them in vehicles.
  • If crossing on foot, have others with you carrying throw ropes, test poles and ice claws.
  • Before crossing, use your pole to stab for thin spots and push hard for several seconds to test plate stability.
  • As you move along the ridge, watch for hazards. They will often zig-zag, and you may find wet spots or large holes near the edge.

If you are out on the Great Sacandaga Lake, or any waterbody that may have open pressure ridges on it this weekend, use extreme caution. If you have any questions, contact the Southern Adirondack Snowmobile Association at (518) 545-6683, or the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office at (518) 736-2100.