As if this town has not had enough problems already, today it got a hint of things to come; things it doesn't even want to think about.

A pickup truck, venturing out onto Lake Placid to do some ice fishing, broke through the thin ice. It's front wheels and radiator sank so that the machine assumed a 45-degree angle until wreckers pulled it free.

"Heck, the fellow knew the odds were with him," said Judge John Kelly of Lake Placid. "We've had 10 guys go out there in trucks to fish and only two of 'em have sunk."

Lake Placid itself is far from frozen solid. Near shore, it is not frozen at all for at least 10 yards out in some spots.

Mirror Lake, where thousands of people gather at mid ice each evening for the awarding of medals, appears to be frozen solid. However, only about 3,000 have ventured out at one time. If Eric Heiden wins a fifth gold medal Saturday, the number of people on Mirror Lake could be 10 times that.

Lake Placid officials are aware of the touchy implications of having tens of thousands of people in the middle of a lake during the warmest winter in this town's history.

Ed Lewis, press official for the Lake Placid Olympic disorganizing committee, says that Army engineers have tested the thickness of the ice in Mirror Lake.

Lewi says it's thick enough.

Lewi, incidently, is the man who said the buses here would run on time. He said tests had been made. It was a sure thing.

Today, for the first time during this Olympics, there were signs that the LPOOC might finally be getting its bus-act together.

A West German newspaper editorialized on Sunday that, "We realize that it is impossible to be in two places at once. But at Lake Placid you can't be any place at once."

Finally, on this seventh of 13 unlucky Olympic days, it was impossible to move about with only delays that could be measured in minutes rather than hours.

At Keene, where 6,000 people where stranded for three hours one night last week, buses moved relatively quickly to bring spectators into Lake Placid from that satellite parking lot.

At Intervale, site of the opening ceremonies and ski jumping, where disgusted fans have regularly preferred to walk two to three miles through snow rather than wait for buses, the transportation flow was acceptable today.

At the luge and hob runs, where desserted fans were so cold that police broke down doors into a substation to get them warm last weekend, there were no problems.

And, miracle of miracles, at Whiteface Mountain -- the most hopelessly remote and crowded of all Olympic venues -- fans at today's men's giant slalom rarely faced waits in line of more than an hour. On Sunday, when the wind chill was well-below zero, those waits in huddled bus lines averaged two to 2 1/2 hours.

"I think that we may have turned a corner," said Howard Clark, the state's transportation spokesman here. "We've had no horror stories yet today, though I don't want to speak too soon.

"We've made several changes in the last five days and I think we're finally figuring it out. We anticipated that today, being a holiday, would be moderately bad, even though there weren't many events.

"For the first time, we can say that a day seems to have gone well."

The recent improvements in the Olympic bus fiasco have been so rudimentary as to be frightening."

"We are leaning to forecast the size of crowds," said Clark. "Also we didn't know that events like the luge and the downhill skiing might be finished in less than an hour. When events ended quickly, sometimes we didn't dispatch the first bus until an hour after they were over.

"Now, we have people running up and down the hill with walkie-talkies telling us how events are progressing and when they'll be over."

Finally the LPOOC has managed to get their bus drivers up before 9 a.m. For days, fans have been gathering as early as 7 a.m. to get in bus lines for 11 a.m. events. But the first bus might not have shown until 9 a.m. when the line already was 5,000 people long.

This morning, buses started showing up as soon as there were people to transport.

The early a.m. problem may be improving, but what about the worse dilemma of what happens after dark? Bus drivers don't like to work overtime for free and lots of them quit at 6 p.m.

"We thought everything was solved when the hounds (Greyhounds) got here," said one Bluebird driver. "But their drivers knock off the minute the whistle blows. The rest of us are making an extra run or two, even though we don't know if we're going to get paid for it."

Today was the first day that bus drivers are given one-day passes to get into the press center where they could get a free box lunch or pay civil prices for hot food.

If Lake Placid is finally beginning to cope, it may be just in time. Only one death has been reported on the slopes (heart attack at the men's downhill), but real cold weather may be coming.

"Cold times are on the way," said Doc. Taylor, Whiteface meteorologist. "It got down to minus-10 in some places Saturday night, but it's probably going to be even colder the rest of the week."