The Minnesota DNR urges everyone to take the proper precautions including saying off the ice if temperatures stay above freezing for more than 24 hours. You should also avoid ice near flowing water especially near streams and bridges. A good rule of thumb the needed thickness of the ice is 4 for walking on and at least 12 for cars. Thickness can be determined by drilling into the ice. DNR conservation officer Chris Howe recommends asking area bait shops on the conditions if you don't have a drill. Howe says, "In the end it all comes down to the responsibility of the individual who is responsible for their own safety on the ice."
Howe says he hasn't seen too many problems this year around Lake Washington. Last year four people died after falling through the ice in Minnesota.