ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- -

Officials say this has been the deadliest winter on Minnesota ice in more than five years.

The Department of Natural Resources says five people have died after going through the ice in Minnesota this winter. A sixth is missing and presumed drowned.

That's the highest figure since the winter of 2006-07, when eight people died in ice-related incidents.

DNR boat and water safety specialist Kara Owens says more people could be venturing out onto the ice this season because it's been a cooler winter with more snow.

All the fatalities this winter have involved a snowmobile or vehicle either falling into open water or breaking through the ice.

Owens says it's crucial that people don't let their guard down and that they recognize that ice is never 100 percent safe.