Live Oak, Florida- July 5, 2012
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has imposed "Idle-Speed, No-Wake" zones. That means any vessel on the river must proceed at the slowest reasonable speed to maintain steerage and headway.
An Idle-Speed zone is in effect for the 51-mile stretch of river from Rock Bluff to one mile below the Fowler Bluff Ramp. The high water can be dangerous to boaters because of floating debris but it is mostly for home owners.
"It's close to entering people's homes already. Even homes that are up on stilts. And when a boat comes by and makes a big wake that wake may be enough to wash water straight on in to those folk's homes," said Tony Cameron, Suwannee County Sheriff.
The "Idle-Speed, No Wake" zones stay in effect until the water level recedes below 9 feet. FWC officers will patrol this area of the river to ensure the restrictions are enforced.
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Zone 1: From the U.S. 90 Bridge at Ellaville South to the State Road 51 Bridge at Luraville. This 39-mile stretch becomes an "Idle-Speed, No-Wake" zone when the Suwannee River reaches 47 feet or more above mean sea level at the Ellaville gauge, where flood stage is 54 feet.
Zone 2: From the S.R. 51 Bridge at Luraville to Little River Spring. This 18-mile segment becomes an "Idle-Speed, No-Wake" zone when the Suwannee River reaches 26 feet or more above mean sea level at the Branford gauge, where flood stage is 29 feet.
Zone 3: From Little River Spring to the C.R. 340 Bridge at Rock Bluff. This 23-mile segment becomes an "Idle-Speed, No-Wake" zone when the Suwannee River reaches 24 feet or more above mean sea level at the Branford gauge.
Zone 4: Which runs from the County Road 340 Bridge at Rock Bluff to one mile below the Fowler Bluff Boat Ramp, when the river reaches 9 feet above mean sea level at the Wilcox gauge, where flood stage is 11 feet.
Zone 5: A 32-mile segment of the Santa Fe River, which runs from River Rise in O’Leno State Park, west to the confluence of the Suwannee River, was activated June 29, when the Santa Fe River reached 17 feet above mean sea level at the Three Rivers gauge, where flood stage is 19 feet. It remains in effect.
To obtain real-time river level information, visit www.mysuwanneeriver.com.
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