It's the Law

Boating Near Dams–Beware!


Fishing and boating immediately below any dam is dangerous and should be avoided.

  • Large volumes of water can be discharged within a matter of seconds through hydroelectric dams due to the demand for electricity or flood control.
  • Many upstream and downstream areas around dams are designated as restricted areas, and boaters should refrain from entering those areas.
  • Cold water released through tributary dams may be a hazard, even during the summer. Cold-water temperatures (below 77° F) can cause cold shock, short-term swim failure, or hypothermia.

To protect yourself and your passengers:

  • Take special precautions when fishing below a dam by boat. Always wear and buckle a PFD (life jacket) and leave the motor running, even if drift fishing.
  • Never anchor your boat in the area below a dam, and never anchor your boat from the stern.
  • Immediately move to a safer area if a siren sounds or strobe lights flash. These are warnings that the water conditions are about to change drastically.