Advertise Contribute My Account

Lake LBJ

Because Life is Better at the Lake

Boating Safety

by




Many Texans are taking advantage of sunshine on the state’s waterways this July 4th Weekend. Compared to this time last year, drownings are up more than 30 percent, so the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is reminding everyone to be safe this holiday weekend and all year by following basic boating safety precautions and public health guidelines while on the water. Most of the tragic deaths and serious injuries that occurred in Texas waters last year could have been prevented by following a few simple and important steps.

Wear a life jacket, learn how to swim, closely supervise children, use a kill switch, never drive a boat while under the influence of alcohol and take a boater education class. 

Safety precautions do not end at the shoreline. It is important that the public stay current with the latest COVID-19 safety precautions from state and local officials before heading to the water. Texans are encouraged to check with the managing authority of the waterbody they intend to visit for any local ordinances in place.

Current recommendations include minimizing in-person contact by maintaining six feet of separation and avoiding groups larger than 10 people. Boaters should also continue to maintain a safe social distance and avoid crowds while out on the water or at docks and ramps.

Boating under the influence is just as deadly as drinking and driving. Every year dozens of boating accidents and tragedies on Texas waters could have been avoided if the operator had refrained from drinking. Have a designated driver at all times when boating on Texas waterways.

Operating a boat with a blood alcohol concentration above 0.08 percent is an offense that can lead to fines, confinement in jail, and the loss of a driver’s license. In 2019, game wardens made 193 criminal arrests for boating while intoxicated across the state.

According to Texas state law, a life jacket must be available for each occupant of a boat or paddle craft. Children who are under the age of 13 are required to wear one while the boat or paddle craft is underway or drifting. Last year in Texas, game wardens issued 583 citations for children not wearing a life jacket and 1,483 for insufficient life jackets on the vessel. Some good news is the overall number of citations were down 5.4 percent compared to the previous year.

Texans can check out the Life Jacket Association website for a guide to proper cleaning and storing of their Personal Flotation Devices in relation to the virus.

Along with safe boating, TPWD reminds boaters of the threat zebra mussels and giant Salvinia threatening Texas Lakes.

Currently, zebra mussels are found in 30 Texas lakes across five river basins as well as in river reaches downstream of infested lakes. These invaders can litter shorelines with sharp shells, impact recreation, harm aquatic life, damage boats and clog water intakes.

Boaters can help keep zebra mussels and other invasive species from being moved and harming more lakes by taking a few minutes to properly clean, drain and dry boats and equipment before they leave the lake.

If you have stored your boat on the water at a lake with zebra mussels, it may also be infested. Before moving it to another lake, call TPWD at (512) 389-4848 for guidance on decontamination. A status map of these lakes can be found at tpwd.texas.gov/zebramussels.

Have fun on the water boating, fishing, skiing, whatever your watersports quest is. TWPD Rangers will be out making sure everyone can make it out for another weekend(s).

 Photo courtesy lake-lbj.net

 

 




Tom Behrens has over 50 years experience in fishing and hunting across the United States. Much of this time was spent in Oklahoma and Texas where he became very familiar with the outdoor opportunities in these states. You may contact him by email at: tbehrcomm@gmail.com


Tell us what you think!

Lake LBJ Email Updates


 

Lake LBJ on Social Media

 
       

Lake LBJ Weather Forecast

Friday

Hot

Hi: 100

Friday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 75

Saturday

Hot

Hi: 99

Saturday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 75

Sunday

Hot

Hi: 100

Sunday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 75

Monday

Hot

Hi: 101

Monday Night

Mostly Clear

Lo: 75


Lake LBJ Water Level (last 30 days)


Water Level on 8/7: 825.44 (+0.44)



Lake LBJ Fishing Report from TPWD (Aug. 5)

GOOD. Water clear; 86 degrees; 0.77 low. Black bass are slow on with plastic worms, swimbaits, and chatter baits. Crappie are good on minnows around brush piles, timber, and docks. White bass are good over main lake points and humps in 20-35’ with slabs and rooster tails. Catfish are good on cut bait and prepared bait in 10-25’.