For safety, every ice fisherman should keep a life preserver, a length of rope, and a pair of screwdrivers within reach. Aside from the obvious safety factor, the life preserver provides a comfortable cushion for kneeling. The rope gives rescuers a means of pulling you out from a safe distance, should you fall through. You can use the screwdrivers as ice-grippers to help pull yourself out.
--Jerome B. Robinson