Ohio River Boating Dangers

By: Renee Charles Email
By: Renee Charles Email

This warm sunny weather we're seeing has a lot of people itching to get out on the water. With "Thunder Over Louisville" happening this weekend the U-S Coast Guard is warning would be boaters to think twice before launching their boats because the Ohio River 'could' be dangerous and even damaging to your boat.

Now is really not the time to try to take a pleasure trip on the Ohio River. While the view east of the Big Four Bridge may be tempting for Saturdays show, because of recent flooding the current is moving quickly and there are many obstacles.

The Coast Guards says if the weather is sunny and warm they could see upwards of 2 or 300 boats.

While the river level is expected to drop another six feet by Saturday, many people may not have enough anchor line to stay put. The Coast Guard says you'll need at least a couple hundred feet to anchor safely and it may look like just a few inches of driftwood but it could be attached to an entire tree that's floating just beneath the surface.

If it's an inboard outboard the debris could rip out that lower unit and leave a gaping hole in the stern of the boat. And it only takes three or four seconds for a medium sized pleasure craft to go under. That leaves very little time to react and that's why kids should always be wearing their life jackets and everyone on board should have one.

You may also want to have flares, cell phones and radios with you and remember half of your trip will be in the dark. As always there will be a line of patrol boats leading the parade back upstream after the show to the boat ramps and docks. The Coast Guard also warns boaters to make sure they have working navigation lights and to keep all other lighting on board to a minimum.


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