River Anglers Reminded of Wading Safety Tips
COLUMBUS, OH – The arrival of the popular “walleye run” along the Maumee and Sandusky rivers and other early spring fishing opportunities is about to begin and anglers are advised by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) to observe some basic safety tips while wading and boating in pursuit of their favorite game fish.
The walleye run traditionally hits its peak and attracts the largest numbers of anglers to the Maumee and Sandusky rivers during late March through mid-April. Boat anglers and wading anglers also begin to increase their fishing activities elsewhere across the state as warmer temperatures gradually emerge. Here are some basic safety tips to keep in mind while wading and fishing from boats during early spring:
- Dress properly for the water temperature instead of the air temperature to guard against the effect of hypothermia should you unexpectedly fall into the water.
- Wear an approved inflatable life vest, life jacket or flotation coat anytime while wading in a river or stream and anytime while on a boat.
- Wear a pair of quality-made chest waders and tighten a cinch belt at the waistline outside the waders to help prevent them from filling with water should a water immersion occur. Water weighs about 8 pounds per gallon and can make walking to the shoreline extremely difficult if waders fill with cold water.
- Never wear waders while fishing from a boat.
- Carry a large walking stick or wading staff to help provide balance while wading in a river. Use a pair of metal crampons or cleats, which fit over the boot portion of waders, to significantly improve traction when wading across slippery rocks and other debris commonly found along river bottoms.
- Do not fish alone; fish with a wading or boating partner. Let friends or family members know of your fishing and boating plans.
- Be properly licensed and knowing the fishing regulations. Avoid alcohol consumption and be aware of local ordinances and state laws that prohibit open displays of alcoholic beverages and public consumption of alcohol.
- Keep available extra clothing, be prepared to handle an emergency situation if it arises and stay informed of current and forecast weather and water conditions.
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR web site at www.ohiodnr.com.