Enid Lake

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Enid Lake prepares for July 4 holiday

By Enid Lake  Park Rangers

With the Fourth of July just a week away, remember to put safety at the top of the list while making plans.

When participating in water activities, some important tips to remember include the fact that all boaters and every member of the boating party must have a U. S. Coast Guard approved Personal Flotation Device (PFD). Persons onboard must not only have a PFD, but it must fit properly, be readily accessible, and be in good condition.

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Boaters should also be familiar with and abide by the life jacket wear requirements which went into effect in 2009 on Arkabutla, Sardis, Enid, and Grenada Lakes.  These rules include:

*All persons must wear a Type I, II or III U. S. Coast Guard approved life jacket at all times while swimming outside of the designated swimming areas. Waivers may be issued by Resource Managers to exempt participants of special events, such as triathlons.

*All persons must wear a Type I, II, or III U. S. Coast Guard approved life jacket at all times while skiing or being pulled by a vessel, regardless of vessel length.

* All persons must wear a Type I, II, or III U. S. Coast Guard approved life jacket on powered vessels 16 to 26 feet in length whenever under power by the main propulsion unit. (This does not include when the vessel is stationary or powered by a trolling motor).

*All persons must wear a Type I, II, or III U. S. Coast Guard approved life jacket at all times on powered vessels less than 16 feet in length or on non-powered vessels, regardless of length. Non-powered vessels include, but are not limited to canoes, kayaks, flat bottom/john boats, sailboats, and paddleboats.

Other boating tips include never boat alone, always practice the buddy system, and remember that alcohol and water don’t mix.

All designated beaches, except for Hickory Ridge Beach, are currently closed due to low water conditions. For those who will be visiting this beach, remember never swim alone; have adult supervision for children; never depend on inflatables to keep you afloat, always wear a U. S. Coast Guard approved PFD, and never dive into the water. Remember, the  Life Jacket Mandate is in effect and a life jacket is required to swim outside designated swimming areas.

We remind campers and visitors, who will be frequenting the campgrounds over the holiday weekend, to be extremely cautious due to the large camping crowds and congestion. We ask all visitors to pay close attention to cyclists, small children and other pedestrians, and vehicle speed, while driving through the campgrounds.

We also remind campers and visitors that only those persons with a valid driver’s license are allowed to drive golf carts in the campground areas. Golf carts may be used in campgrounds for egress and access only. They are not to be used for joy riding, and may be operated only from sunrise to sunset.

No Independence Day celebration seems complete without fireworks.

However, the rules and regulations governing the public use of Enid Lake prohibits the possession or use of explosives, firearms, fireworks, or other pyrotechnics, unless written permission has been received from the Vicksburg District Commander.

Rangers will be strictly enforcing the “No Fireworks” policy throughout the holiday weekend.