• 66°

Busy season on water begins today with calls to take extra care

By Nathan Hardin
For the Salisbury Post
The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission is preparing for one of the busiest boating holidays starting today by cautioning those on the water to be aware of increased boating traffic.
The Commission released several recommended steps for boaters, including tips on launching and recovering vessels. According to Senior Officer Bill Tarplee, the overall safety theme this weekend is awareness.
“One of the leading causes of boat accidents is not keeping a good lookout. It’s a multitasking operation,” Tarplee said.
Officers aren’t out to stop boaters’ fun, Tarplee said, but they are out to ensure safety.
“The biggest thing is we just want everybody to be safe, and to make sure everyone keeps an eye out and kids under 13 wear a life jacket,” Tarplee said. “If you’re drinking, have a designated driver.”
Intoxicated boat operators are one of Jeremy Meadows’ main concerns.
“You just have to watch out for drunk people on the boats, but there’s a lot of police out here. They crack down on that,” Meadows said.
Meadows, who owns a 13-foot sailboat, said he enjoys the increased traffic on July Fourth.
“I personally enjoy it,” Meadows said. “I’m looking for that kind of stuff. Sailboats have the right of way on any lake.”
Meadows said other boaters, however, don’t usually enjoy the high-volume traffic.
“It’s crowded. You can’t get up to any speed on July Fourth. You have to get out here earlier in the day,” he said.
Keith Jones, a Davie County resident, agrees.
“On the Fourth, (the lake) is like a crowded freeway at 5 o’clock,” Jones said. “I don’t think I’ll do that again. There are too many boats.”
Jones said because of the number of people on the water, boating on July Fourth at High Rock Lake is like being a defensive driver.
“You have to keep a vigil out because you don’t know what the other boaters are going to do,” Jones said. “You don’t know what their intentions are.”
Jones said another concern when boating at High Rock is the amount of debris in the water.
“There’s a lot of things underwater that you don’t see,” Jones said.
According to Tarplee, debris is just something boaters have to contend with when boating on a river.
“Anytime you’re in a moving river you’re going to have logs and debris that float downstream sporadically,” Tarplee said. “Some are big; some are small. It goes back to making sure you’re keeping a lookout for things going on in the river.”
Tarplee said the key to avoiding debris is reducing your speed on the water.
“It’s similar to an iceberg. Just because you see something little doesn’t mean it’s little under the water,” Tarplee said. “Reduce your speed — especially when you’re in high-traffic areas.”
Carlos Hernandez, a Cabarrus County resident, said he’s been fishing at High Rock Lake for the past week but won’t stay around for the holiday weekend.
“There’s just too many boats,” Hernandez said. “They make a lot of waves. It’s really bad for regular bass boats.”
Another concern for Hernandez and Jones is how close personal watercraft come to other vessels on the lake.
According to Tarplee, personal watercraft operators will be ticketed this weekend if they do not adhere to the state’s operator regulations.
“Jet Skis are required by law to be 100 feet from boats that are moored, boats that are anchored or any other boats,” Tarplee said. “It’s a pretty good distance, but if you look at the totality of the circumstance — if you’re going wide open — it’s not very far at all.”
 
 
 
 

Comments

Comments closed.

Coronavirus

State shows 303 COVID-19 deaths in Rowan

Coronavirus

CDC: Fully vaccinated people can largely ditch masks indoors

Crime

One arrested, another hospitalized in Castor Road stabbing

China Grove

China Grove Roller Mill open for tours Saturday

News

Facing personnel deficiencies, local fire departments request tax rate increases

Local

‘Panic buying’ creates gas supply shortages locally, statewide after pipeline cyberattack

Business

Twice as nice: Planet Smoothie opens alongside Cold Stone Creamery in co-branded store

Local

Spencer board gets update on South Iredell rat problem

Education

West Rowan teacher awarded $15,000 outdoor learning grant

Cleveland

Town of Cleveland plans celebration May 22

High School

High school girls tennis: Busy Hornets win again easily

High School

High school softball: Nixon, Walton top all-county team

Education

All Hood Alumni and Friends Symposium scheduled June 18

Education

Shoutouts: Southern City Church awards educational gifts

Local

City to pave streets surrounding Bell Tower Green after park is constructed

Nation/World

Colonial Pipeline restarts operations days after major hack

Nation/World

Ohio’s million-dollar idea: Lottery prizes for vaccinations

Nation/World

GOP dumps defiant Trump critic Cheney from top House post

Nation/World

Israel steps up Gaza offensive, kills senior Hamas figures

Coronavirus

Fluctuating COVID-19 death number back to 302 in Rowan County

Crime

Habitual felon sentenced to at least 8 years in prison

Kannapolis

City of Kannapolis to have bike rodeo Saturday

Crime

Two more charged for operating illegal gambling businesses

Education

A.L. Brown celebrates seniors with signing day