On Saturday 01/20/2024 at around 1512 hours, Station 12’s officer in charge was alerted to contact Northern Berks Regional Police Department for a detail. Northern Berks Regional Police Department notified Blandon Fire Company’s officer in charge of an ice auger left on the ice of Lake Ontelaunee, next to a large hole. Based on the report, a Water Emergency response was placed on standby until officers accessed the situation.
Upon arrival, Company officers and Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission located a trail in the snow leading out onto the ice, a small ice fishing hole, and beyond that an ice auger next to a larger hole. It appeared clothing articles were also next to the hole. At this point, the Water Emergency assignment was requested to respond for a possible victim in the water. Once water rescue teams arrived, cameras and divers were placed in the water to search the lake bed. Two boots, a glove, and the auger were retrieved but no victim was found.
During the operation, local hospitals were contacted to see if a victim arrived with symptoms related to cold emergencies. The area was also scanned for vehicles, and civilians were interviewed. Based upon findings, it was determined an individual possibly fell through the ice but self extricated prior to arrival of rescuers and abandoned their equipment. The operation was later ceased, and the assignment was placed available around 1844 hours. #blandonfire