MISSOURI STATE HIGHWAY PATROL
a division of the
DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
Water Patrol Division, Post Office Box 568, Jefferson City, MO 65102-0568
For further information please contact: Sgt. Jerry Callahan
EMPHASIS: Boat Operation Considerations in Flooded Areas
Colonel Ron Replogle, superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol, asks boaters across the state to take extra precautions when boating in flooded areas. The entire southern region of Missouri has experienced large amounts of rainfall over the last week causing rivers and lakes to become swollen. Many times the right decision is to stay off the water.
In areas where lakes or rivers have spilled over the banks, erosion and damage can occur to flooded structures, docks, or water laden levees by boat wakes. Boaters should avoid operating in these areas. If operation in these areas is necessary boaters should operate at idle speed so as not to cause a wake. Troopers are being utilized to patrol flooded areas to prevent theft from evacuated homes.
Flooded rivers and streams with moving currents present some of the most dangerous situations a boater can encounter. Fast moving water can easily capsize or flip a boat, especially when combined with fixed objects such as trees and buildings. Boaters should avoid any operations in these swift flowing waters.
Many lakes and rivers across the state have only seen routine increases in water levels. It is for the safety of the public and to minimize damage to property that the Highway Patrol requests boaters avoid waterways that have been impacted by the most severe flooding.