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GRDA issues advisories in aftermath of massive storm

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Posted at 11:01 AM, May 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-28 12:01:56-04

In the aftermath of a massive storm that blanketed Green Country on Saturday night, the Grand River Dam Authority has issued advisories for northeastern Oklahoma.

GRAND RIVER DAM AUTHORITY - SCENIC RIVERS OPERATIONS
ILLINOIS RIVER BASIN

Floating Advisory: Rainfall from Friday evening’s storms occurring in the headwaters area of the Illinois River Basin has water levels and flows on the increase at the Flint Creek and Illinois River-Watts Gage Sites this Sunday morning.

Commercial Flotation Device Operations recommend that first-time, novice floaters and children do not float in canoes, kayaks or inner tubes, but rather be teamed with experienced floaters using rafts. All floaters should wear a personal flotation device at all times while floating, wading and swimming.

Warning: There are several areas in the Illinois River where fallen trees and debris accumulations pose navigational hazards to boaters and swimmers. 

RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FLOATERS, SWIMMERS AND CAMPERS

• Be sure to inform the commercial flotation device operation if you or anyone in your party are a first-time or novice floater(s) so that they may pair you with an experienced paddler/floater or float you in a raft so there is a lesser chance for capsizing;
• Wear a personal flotation device at all times;
• Never swim or boat alone. Stay within sight of companions;
• Do not float when river levels and discharge flows are higher than normal or at flood stage;
• If you capsize, stay with your flotation device on the upstream side. Resist the urge to grab a fixed object don't get pinned between the flotation device and a rock or tree;
• When tired, take a break on a gravel bar to relax;
• Take a shorter length float trip (especially in rafts and inner tubes) when river levels are at Summer-time lows and winds are out of the South greater than 10mph;
• Do not dive into the river from bridges, bluffs, streambanks and trees;
• Do not swing on rope swings and jump into the water as there may be submerged logs and tree branches that could cause bodily harm;
• Be sure to bring sunglasses, extra cover up clothing, hat and suntan lotion. The sun reflecting off the water will give a person without sunglasses a headache and the extra clothing gives an opportunity not to sunburn;
• Be sure to take water, tea, Gatorade, other thirst-quenching drinks and peanut butter crackers or similar snacks. Try to avoid beer and soda pops as they tend to dehydrate the body and alcohol impairs judgment;
• Be sure to wear river wading shoes to ensure no cuts to your feet;
• Never take anything on your float trip that you don't want to lose. Check your car keys with the commercial flotation device operation for safe keeping;
• Camp only in designated areas. Avoid being trapped by rising water against bluffs or on gravel bars;
• Stay away from any area that has floating debris, oil sheens or dead fish;
• Do not swim after a heavy rain;
• Do not swim in water with a temperature greater than 80ºF;
• Do not swim if you have cuts or scrapes;
• Do not swim near storm drains;
• Do not swim in stagnant (unmoving) water;
• Do not swim in water with a green surface scum; and,
• Do not ingest water.

To Report Emergencies: Call 911
Ed Fite
Vice-President for Scenic Rivers and Water Quality
Grand River Dam Authority
Office: (918) 456-3251
Work Cell: (918) 323-6825
 

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