With the spring thaw right around the corner, officials are reminding ice fishers to get their huts off Sylvan Lake, or they could become submerged.
Owners of ice fishing huts have until March 31 to remove the buildings from Sylvan Lake, but Beverly Anderson, Sylvan Lake management committee, said it would be better if the huts could be removed sooner than the end of the month.
“Take it off now, because this year we’re getting some pretty warm days and probably an early break-up of the ice,” said Anderson.
“We want to make sure people don’t wait until the end of the season, which is March 31.”
After March 31 anything left on the ice is considered litter and can be pulled off by provincial government employees.
“We can’t risk people from the municipalities or the government to risk their life to go out and pull off ice-fishing huts,’ said Anderson.
She also said there looks like there are a few ice huts on the lake that haven’t been used in a while, and hopes the owners will get them off sooner rather than later.
There are eight municipalities around Sylvan Lake with dozens of huts still on the ice.
“People are starting to gradually take them off,” said Anderson. “I noticed (Monday) someone was pulling theirs off. We just want to make sure people don’t leave it too long. When they do sink to the bottom, then we have pollution issues.”
As well as environmental concerns of sunken ice- fishing huts is the safety concern, such as water skiers or boaters colliding with a floating huts.
Anderson said it was popular this year for people to use holiday trailers as ice fishing huts, with a hole through the floor.
“If the whole trailer sinks to the bottom it’s not like wood that might break up, it’s a whole holiday trailer,” said Anderson.