12/30/2012 05:47 EST

Ice Rescue Goes Horribly Wrong (VIDEO)

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A rescue attempt took a turn for the worse when a man fell into a frozen lake and a few who tried to save him followed, ABC News reports.

The incident occurred when at least a dozen people were sledding next to Jackson Lake near Wrightwood, Calif. on Dec. 25. One of them surpassed the ice's edge and landed in the chilly water, according to NBC.

Mickey Herman, who recorded the video and assisted with the rescue, described the panic felt at the scene.

"It was just total chaos and out of control. We saw that poor guy, the first one to go in, it was obvious he didn’t know how to swim," he told ABC News.

Raw video shows people rushing to the man's aid and providing their inflatable tubes and ropes in the hopes of a rescue. However, some broke the ice and became victims themselves.

Falling through ice on a frozen body of water can lead to drowning or hypothermia, Health Canada warns. To prevent injury or death, check ice conditions, wear a personal flotation device, wear a suit to avoid hypothermia, and don't visit frozen bodies of water alone. Also, be sure to have tools like rope and a safety kit. If someone does fall through ice, follow these instructions to assist them.

Eventually, everybody got ashore safely, and no serious injuries were reported.

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