Janesville and other rescue units were dispatched Monday morning to help the Fort Atkinson Fire Department with a water rescue on Lake Koshkonong, but the object in the lake turned out to be a log or tree.
While the incident was of little consequence, it gave authorities the oppotunity to warn about unsafe ice at a time of year when ice fishing and snowmobiling are popular activities on area lakes.
A caller spotted something far offshore from the Vinnie Haha boat landing but could not see it clearly because of distance and fog, said Division Chief Tom Gerondale of the Fort Atkinson Fire Department.
The caller thought the object could have been a person, but no one could tell until rescuers got there with air boats, Gerondale said.
The call to Vinnie Haha Road on the east side of the lake came in around 8:49 a.m., he said.
The Janesville Fire Department confirmed sending its dive team with a boat.
The Rock County Sheriff’s Office also sent an air boat to the scene and afterward warned that the lake has large areas of open water and thin ice.
Ice only a few inches thick broke as the air boat passed over it, according to a news release.
“Large pieces of debris” also were seen frozen in the ice and floating in open water.
The ice is unsafe on the lake and on surrounding bodies of water, according to the sheriff’s office.