|Low water requires increased diligence at boat ramps|
|Written by Submitted|
|Tuesday, July 10, 2012 1:57 PM|
As a result of the drought, more public boat ramps are
becoming unsafe for launching trailered boats, especially on rivers.
Shallow water has increased the risk that boat operators will drive
their trailers over the ends of boat ramps, especially in muddy rivers
where ramps can be difficult to see underwater.
The trailers could become stuck or damaged, according to Jamie Smyth,
fisheries staff specialist with the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife.
“Use common sense. Don’t push it too far. If you decide to launch a trailered boat, go nice and slow,” said Smyth.
DNR boat ramps are administered through the DNR divisions of Fish & Wildlife and State Parks & Reservoirs.
The Division of Fish & Wildlife maintains hundreds of boat ramps
across Indiana through its public access program and does not monitor
water levels at each one. DFW does not plan on closing any ramps and is
instead urging people to use their own discretion.
Some ramps are currently only suitable for launching canoes, kayaks and small, hand-carried boats, Smyth said.
“Once you safely launch your boat, use extra caution to avoid shallow water, rocks and other obstacles,” Smyth said.
Water levels are abnormally low at all DNR reservoirs, and boaters are urged to use caution.
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