A 63-year old Orland man and his dog died Wednesday after the truck the man was driving broke through the ice on a lake not far from Penobscot Bay.
The Maine Warden Service says Brian Wardwell was driving on Alamoosook Lake in Orland at around 7:15 p.m. Wardens say a person on shore made an unsuccessful attempt to rescue Wardwell but also fell through the ice. That person was able to get out of the water.
Firefighters wearing dry suits found Wardwell floating and unresponsive in water that was 10 feet deep. Attempts to revive him were not successful.
Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife spokesperson Mark Latti says ice conditions this year are weaker than usual, especially along the coast.
“We had a warmer than usual January and, without a lot of snow too, you get that sun that's starting to set a little bit later. It's up a little bit higher in the sky. It warms up banks a little bit more.”
Latti urges anyone heading out onto the ice to check it first. He says those along the coast are being asked not to take vehicles out onto the ice.
An ice thickness safety table is posted on the Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife website.