Man rescued crossing frozen lake from Detroit to Toronto
The crew of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Neah Bay rescue a 25-year-old man attempting to walk across Lake St. Clair, from Detroit to Toronto, March 5, 2015. (Lt. Josh Zike/U.S. Coast Guard/QMI Agency)
LONDON, Ont. - A man rescued by the U.S. Coast Guard on Lake St. Clair Thursday said he was walking over the frozen ice from Detroit to Toronto.
According to the Coast Guard, the 25-year-old had "symptoms of hypothermia, which messes with you."
Petty Officer Levi Read said he wasn't able to comment on whether the man was impaired by drugs or alcohol, or whether he has mental-health issues.
"We never really got the real story from him," Read said.
What he did say is that the man, a U.S. citizen who first told his rescuers he was Canadian, was completely unprepared for the conditions.
Coatless in a sweatshirt and pants, he had no cellphone or flotation device with him.
Read said it's unlikely the man would have survived the trek all the way to Toronto.
"Not in the weather that was today," he said.
After being treated on the ice for hypothermia, the man was taken aboard the cutter that had spotted him about 2.4 km from Seaway Island.
"The man was taken to the municipal pier in Algonac, Mich., where he was met by emergency medical service personnel and transferred to their care," the Coast Guard said in a release.
The cutter that spotted the man is based out of Cleveland, Ohio.
Read said it was the first time since 2011 that the Coast Guard has plucked a person from the ice.
"This is really unusual, especially for our Great Lakes cutters," he said. "Last year, we rescued a dog."