Boat like a pro: New video offers guide for safe holiday weekend at Lake Tahoe
TAHOE CITY, Calif. — With the goal of ensuring a safe summer on the water at Lake Tahoe, the League to Save Lake Tahoe, Clean Up The Lake and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency recently released a video that delivers tips and resources for boaters and paddlers planning trips to Big Blue.
In recent years, and even early in this summer season, Tahoe has experienced a rash of tragic, on-water accidents. With the video, the three organizations aim to raise awareness of the lake’s unique conditions and boating rules, and promote good boating behavior – so this year is the safest yet. With the busy July Fourth weekend approaching, sharing efforts have ramped up.
“Boating at Tahoe isn’t like boating at any other lake. That’s because Tahoe isn’t like any other lake,” said Chief Strategy Officer for the League to Save Lake Tahoe Jesse Patterson, also known as Keep Tahoe Blue. “There are unique precautions for getting on the water here that help protect this beautiful environment and, especially, everybody who wants to enjoy it. This video puts that information in one place.”
An easy and meaningful step before leaving the shore is to download the free Tahoe Boating App (tahoeboating.org). The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, in collaboration with the League to Save Lake Tahoe, developed the app to inform boaters about Lake Tahoe, the location of marinas and gas stations, area attractions, and how to enjoy the lake safely and responsibly – including no-wake zones that are unique to Tahoe. Boating at Tahoe can be daunting for first-timers and renters. Using the app is a simple way to get prepared.
“The Tahoe Shoreline Plan protects one of the region’s most sensitive, pristine, and popular ecosystems so that all recreators can enjoy it,” TRPA Executive Director Joanne Marchetta said. “Important measures like the boating app, our on-the-water education program, and the new boating safety video work together to make Lake Tahoe safer and better protected.”
Clean Up The Lake has a wealth of recent experience in how treacherous Tahoe’s waters can be. In May, the nonprofit organization completed the first-ever underwater cleanup of Tahoe’s 72-mile shoreline. Over more than a year and 80-plus dive days on the water, the organization’s staff and volunteers experienced harsh weather, rough water and less than desirable situations with other watercraft. Being alert and prepared to avoid risk is a message they feel passionately about spreading.
“Safety has always been the number one priority for Clean Up The Lake,” said Colin West, founder and executive director of the nonprofit. “While it’s easier to manage safety with our own staff and volunteers, we decided that it is just as important to educate the public who enjoy Lake Tahoe on what these rules are, and how to boat safely while out on the water. This helps to ensure our dive teams are operating in a safer environment, but more importantly it supports the effort that everyone can return home safely at the end of a day on the lake.”
The majority of the boating public passes through one of Tahoe’s many marinas, rental businesses and concessionaires before getting on the lake. Safety is a high priority for these operations, and so is educating their customers effectively and efficiently. The League, TRPA and Clean Up The Lake shared the video with water-based businesses, and many are putting it to good use.
“We do everything we can to keep our customers, and all watercraft users, safe,” said Lucius Beall, General Manager of Tahoe Keys Boat Rentals based on the south shore. “The boating safety video and the Tahoe Boating App have been very helpful tools to deliver clear messages and guidance to our customers.”
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