Jun 15, 2011 | Posted by: roboblogger
Emergency crews with Sandy Springs and Gwinnett County responded to the Chattahoochee River near Jones Bridge Park for a water rescue Tuesday evening.
This issue is complex. Water safety on the river at the dam is very good because it is under the juridiction of the Corps of Engineers. On the property they manage and their flood easements down to the Hwy.20 bridge there are warning signs, sirens, a radio station which broadcasts the generation schedule, special regulations requiring life jackets to be worn, prohibitions on boating/rafting during water release, strict rules prohibiting "outfitters" from launching rafts/tubes within 2 hours of a water release and fairly aggressive enforcement. Downstream of the 20 bridge river access is mostly limited to county and U.S. Park Service parks as well as bridges which are many miles from the dam. So visitors to these areas have little insight except experience to a potential hazard when the rising river waters will get to them. Granted there may be some signs posted but it may be confusing or incomplete information as a water release from Buford Dam may take up to 6.5 hours to reach Jones Bridge Park where most of the rescues have occurred. On the other hand, when I was a teenager in the 70's, there were no warnings or great concern. I fished on the river freguently at Jones Bridge Park and learned to keep an eye on nearby rock or log as a warning sign if the river started to rise. This effort kept me out of trouble. Here is where you can view down river flow times. http://lanier.sam.usace.army.mil/WaterSafety....
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