GAINESVILLE – Joanna Cloud, Executive Director of the Lake Lanier Association, today announced that the association is awarding its Good Samaritan Award to Steven and Sophia Clanton for their rescue of a family including two small children in a capsized jon boat on Lake Lanier Sunday (March 10).
The family, a father, mother, five-year-old boy, and seven-month-old baby girl, were recreating in a small fishing boat when their boat was swamped by waves created by a combination of larger passing boats and wind. The boat capsized into 47-degree water.
The Clantons happened to be in the area fishing from their own boat with their two sons. When the small boat capsized, the Clantons were able to get to the family in the water, pull them out to safety, give them clothing to help offset the risk of hypothermia, and call 911. The Clantons then drove the family to a nearby boat ramp to meet emergency services personnel.
The Lake Lanier Association emphasizes that all children on a boat should be wearing a lifejacket at all times. The LLA also encourages all boaters to be aware of the wake they are creating for others and consider options to minimize their wake.
Senate Bill Will Save Lives and Make Waterways Safer
LLA Director Applauds Work of Lake Lanier Legislative Caucus
GAINESVILLE – Joanna Cloud, Executive Director of the Lake Lanier Association, today credited members of the Lake Lanier Legislative Caucus for drafting tougher boating laws that will save lives and make boating safer on lakes throughout the state.
Senate Bill 136, which passed the Georgia Senate in a unanimous vote, will require Georgia boaters to maintain lower blood alcohol levels than in the past, meet training requirements and wear life-jackets at an extended age.
The bill came out of public hearings hosted by the caucus in Cumming and Gainesville last December.
Cloud said, “While, ultimately, we would like to see more resources devoted toward law enforcement on Lake Lanier, supporting the enforcement we do have is a critical task. Senate Bill 136 allows our law enforcement officers and legal system to better enforce and prosecute issues as they arise.”
Senator Renee Untermann, R-Buford, a member of the caucus, told the Augusta Chronicle, “I know that Senate Bill 136 is a statewide bill, but in particular Lake Lanier, because of the urbanization of the area and the encroachment in direct relationship with Atlanta, we have an overpopulation, especially on holidays. Unfortunately, we’ve had several instances of boating accidents and boating drownings.”
The bill places age limits on those who can drive boats and requires boaters born after 1997 to take free online training or submit to a briefing when renting a vessel. It also lowers the legal blood alcohol level from 0.10 to 0.08, the same level for driving an automobile. It also raises the age for mandatory life jackets on a moving boat from 10 to 13
The caucus was formed in response to safety concerns arising from last summer’s highly-publicized incidents on Lake Lanier, that claimed the lives of three people, including two Gwinnett County brothers.
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For more information, contact Joanna Cloud at 770.503.7757 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
One of our more creative readers suggested we create a little friendly competition regarding the Boater Education Class. Here’s what we will do: the first group of 10 adults that completes a NASBLA certified Boater Education Class since June 2012 or forward and submits the individual names of their group members along with a copy of their certificates will be recognized in an upcoming Lake Lanier Association newsletter and will also receive a prize package from the LLA. The groups can be broadly defined — homeowners in a neighborhood or cove, slip owners at a particular marina dock, sailing club, fishing club, bridge club, tennis team, employees of a local business, etc. Send your group details and the certificates to email@example.com.
You may have already seen the press release regarding the Corps of Engineers offering discount passes for the day-use parks for persons that complete a certified Boater Education Class. The Corps would like to expand that program to allow vendors around the lake to offer incentives for completion of a certified class. Lakeside on Lanier newspaper will highlight businesses and their discount programs in an article in the May issue of the newspaper. Businesses who will be participating should contact Tim Rainey by March 31, 2013, at 770-945-9531.
If you are a local business, please consider participating. If you are not a business, but are a boater on Lake Lanier, please consider getting your certification so that you can enjoy some of the discounts!
Senate Bill 136 regarding boater safety was introduced this week during the legislative session. The below document gives more details about the specifics the bill includes:
Also related to boater safety, Allatoona Lake and Lake Sidney Lanier boaters are invited to take part in a pilot program to encourage boater safety and education.
Through the new program, recreational boaters earning a certificate from an authorized Safe Boating Class will be rewarded with a complimentary annual day-use pass valid for one full year.
Boating safety certificates earned within the past year can be presented to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Project Offices at Allatoona or Lanier along with a valid photo ID to claim their annual day-use pass
If you have successfully completed at boater safety education course, be sure to talk to your insurance company and see if you are eligible for a discount for completing the course. Many insurance companies recognize any certified National Association of State Boating Laws Administrators (NASBLA) course as eligible for discounts.
The Lake Lanier Legislative Caucus, which is a group of state senators and state house representatives with constituencies around Lake Lanier, is holding two public meetings on Saturday, December 15, 2012 to gather feedback from Lake Lanier stakeholders regarding potential lake safety and other issues that may be appropriate for inclusion in the upcoming legislative session starting in January 2013. The Lake Lanier Association has already shared with the Legislative Caucus the results of the member survey we conducted last summer. Please see the most recent LLA newsletter for more details regarding those results. The meetings on December 15th are another opportunity for the general public to voice their concerns to our elected officials.
Individuals are invited to attend either meeting. Since time will be at a premium at both of the meetings, we respectfully request that multiple individuals try not to repeat the same information to allow as many persons as possible the opportunity to voice their opinions. Individuals representing larger groups such as homeowners associations, sailing clubs, fishing clubs, etc. are encouraged to speak on behalf of their group.
1st Hearing will be from 10:30-12 p.m.
Gainesville Civic Center Ballroom
830 Green Street
2nd Hearing will be from 1-2:30 p.m.
Buford City Hall
2300 Buford Hwy
For Immediate Release:
May 15, 2012
Corps Suspends Permits and pursues Water Safey at Lake Lanier
Park Rangers at Lake Lanier are preparing for another busy recreation season while the water level at Lake Lanier continues to decline as drought conditions persist throught the southeast. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) will curtail some of its operations.
On May 20, 2012, USACE will suspend evaluations of permit requests for new private docks received under the lottery system and requests for upgrades to existing private docks. This action is in response to a number of serious boating accidents and water-related deaths on Lake Lanier this year. USACE is refocusing all available park ranger staff to promote water safety through one-on-one contact with lake visitors.
“We regret any inconvenience this may cause, but it is important to be able to shift available staff to assist project visitors during the peak recreation season. We expect that we will need all available park rangers until some point after the Labor Day Holiday period,” said Lisa Coghlan, Deputy Public Affairs Officer.
For additional information contact USACE at 770-945-9531.