Blaine man dies as vehicle goes through ice on Balsam Lake in Wisconsin

The vehicle went through the ice in the narrows between Balsam Lake and East Balsam.
Publish date:

UPDATE 12:05 P.M.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office has identified the victim as David Maki, 63, of Blaine, Minnesota. 

Original story

A man died when the vehicle he was driving went through the ice on Balsam Lake in western Wisconsin on Thursday. 

According to the Polk County Sheriff's Department, a vehicle with Minnesota license plates went through the ice in the narrows between Balsam Lake and East Balsam, an incident that was witnessed by a person who called 911 caller 4:53 p.m. 

The caller informed dispatch that they didn't see anyone exit the vehicle after it went through, and at 5:25 p.m. rescue workers pulled the man from a silver Toyota RAV4 that was nearly fully submerged. 

First responders administered CPR and the man was transported to St. Croix Regional Medical Center. A med-flight helicopter was called to continue life-saving efforts, but doctors pronounced the man dead at 6:12 p.m. 

The victim's identity is being withheld pending notification of family members and the incident remains under investigation by the Polk County Sheriff's Office and the Polk County Medical Examiner's Office.

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It's the latest in a number of incidents of vehicles and people falling through lake ice in the upper Midwest this winter, which follows a period of milder temperatures in December and early January that partially thawed previous frozen ice.

It's prompted warnings from cities and law enforcement to take extra precautions before heading out onto the ice, particularly in a full-sized vehicle.

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