Man falls through ice at Donner Lake

Emma Garrard/Appeal News Service Truckee Fire Protection District firefighters Ryan Ochoa and Eric Jitloff push a Fire Rescue boat out onto Donner Lake in an attempt to rescue a man who fell through the ice Friday morning. The body has yet to be recovered from the Lake.

Emma Garrard/Appeal News Service Truckee Fire Protection District firefighters Ryan Ochoa and Eric Jitloff push a Fire Rescue boat out onto Donner Lake in an attempt to rescue a man who fell through the ice Friday morning. The body has yet to be recovered from the Lake.

DONNER LAKE - A man is presumed dead after falling through the ice here Friday morning.

At 9:24 a.m. a man between the ages of 25 and 40 years old was ice skating about 100 yards from the northern shore of Donner Lake when eyewitnesses saw him fall through the ice and disappear underwater, said Truckee Police Lt. Harwood Mitchell. The depth of the water in that vicinity is about 240 feet, he said.

Lisa Cortopassi was driving along Donner Pass Road when she saw the man fall into the lake.

Cortopassi said she immediately called 911 on her cell phone and ran to the nearest house to contact emergency personnel.

A dive team of personnel from Truckee Fire Protection District and Truckee Police Department attempted multiple ice rescues, but due to water temperatures, divers reclassified their response to a recovery effort at about 10:45 a.m. The body had not been recovered or identified as of 5:05 p.m. Friday, when the effort was halted for the evening. The recovery effort will continue this morning, Mitchell said.

The Placer County Sheriff's dive team also responded to the scene to aid in the recovery.

Mitchell said responders think two people were on the lake when the man fell through the ice. Investigators are working to locate the other individual, who might have known the victim, Mitchell said.

Truckee Police and Truckee Fire personnel are urging all others to remain off the ice because of thin-ice conditions, he said. The ice is unsafe, according to Mitchell.

Anyone with information is asked to call Truckee Police at (530) 550-2320.

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