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Certain areas are designated as “boating safety zones” and have special restrictions.

  • It is unlawful to operate a powerboat between May 1 and September 30 within the areas of:
    • Jekyll Island, for a distance of 1,000 feet seaward from the high water mark on Jekyll Island Beach from the north end to the south end of the island
    • Tybee Island Beach, for a distance of 1,000 feet seaward from the high water mark on Tybee Island Beach from the north end to the south end of the island
    • St. Simons Island, for a distance of 1,000 feet seaward from the high water mark from the north end to the south end of the island
    • Sea Island, for a distance of 1,000 feet seaward from the high water mark from the north end to the south end of the island
  • It is unlawful to operate any type of boat during any time of the year within the:
    • Marked boundary of any marked swimming area
    • Upstream or downstream area of any dam designated by the Commissioner (these areas will be marked with signs and/or buoys)
  • It is unlawful to operate a boat with a motor in excess of 10 horsepower on the Ogeechee River from the bridge at Georgia Highway 119 upstream.
  • It is unlawful to operate any boat with a marine toilet, galley, or sleeping quarters (including houseboats) on Bull Sluice Lake, Lake Burton, Goat Rock Lake, Lake Harding, Lake Jackson, North Highlands Lake, Lake Oconee, Lake Oliver, Lake Rabun, Seed Lake, Tallulah Falls Lake, Tugalo Lake, and Yonah Lake.

Video: Georgia Boating Safety Zones

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Video Transcript
Rob

Before people take a boat into certain waters in Georgia, what do they need to do?

Corporal Jeremy Bolen

We would encourage anybody, before they make the purchase of a boat, to do their homework, to do their research, to maybe find out what and what they can’t do in certain areas—lakes, rivers, have different vessel restrictions. Such as, Georgia power lakes, you can’t operate vessels with marine toilets, galleys, sleeping quarters, and so forth. You know, certain parts of the coast, you can’t operate around some of the islands during certain times of the year. And some of the rivers, you know, you can’t operate but certain horsepowers as well as some of the lakes. There’s motor restrictions.

Rob

What are some of the ways that people can find out where they can go with their boat?

Corporal Bolen

All the Georgia boating zones are listed in the Georgia Boating Handbook. That information can also be found at www.goboatgeorgia.com as well as the back of the handbooks. Each region’s law enforcement office phone number is listed there. They could contact them with questions as well.

Rob

So they could just call them up and they could ask?

Corporal Bolen

That’s right.

Rob

Handy.