Coast Guard moves up start to ice-breaking on Kennebec River

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — The U.S. Coast Guard has announced it will start ice-breaking on the Kennebec River in Maine about four days earlier than planned.

The Coast Guard said ice-breaking will begin Thursday due to a spring storm predicted to move through the region starting that evening.

People are being asked to remove all ice fishing shacks from the river as soon as possible, and police are warning residents about the potential for flooding.

Kennebec County Emergency Management Agency Director Sean Goodwin says the ice-breaking operation is aimed at opening a channel to allow the ice to flush into the ocean.

The Coast Guard is sending two ice cutters, the Thunder Bay, a 140-foot tug, and the Shackle, a 65-foot tug.

A second operation will clear ice on the Penobscot River.