The Christmas tree is to tell divers where to look for the car. The driver survived by walking about a mile on the ice to an island which was inhabited at the time. He broke through at a pressure ridge.Every year the America Alpine Club publishes Accidents In North American  Mountaineering.  It is a good view of the ground truth about how things go wrong in the hills.  The accounts presented here have the same purpose.  They are a mix of accidents and near misses that have lessons for us.  Please keep in mind that all of this is written with the benefit of hindsight. The following accounts are anonymous unless they are extensively covered elsewhere or the people involved are OK with a less anonymous description. The following are links to a few accounts. 

Reading about other people's misfortune leads some people to over estimate the risk they face on the ice. Please remember that while there are fatalities on frozen lakes, ponds and rivers every year, the likelyhood of you being one of those people is very small, especially if you take reasonable precautions


The following are a several accident accounts.  The first five had follow up investigations.


If you have a story to tell that you think will help the rest of us stay out of trouble or if you were involved on one of the events described here and you don't think we have the details correct please get in touch.