Watching Barren River Lake July 4 fireworks from the water requires caution

   In addition to viewing the Barren River Lake July 4 fireworks from the state park, many others will be observing the fireworks from their boats on the lake. Viewing the fireworks on the lake, while a great vantage point, does require added caution.
   While all boat ramps around the lake are open, they also all remain back-down only.
   Discoverboating provides these additional tips when viewing fireworks from the water:
* Check that all running and anchor lights are working properly.
* Make sure you have all of your safety equipment including a whistle (or other approved noise-making advice).
* Remember you need life jacket for everyone on board. Sometimes you’ll have more passengers than usual for a special trip like this, so a life-jacket count is important. Remember that water-enforcement authorities will be out in numbers.
* Use ear protection for children or hearing-sensitive adults. The sound of exploding fireworks is greatly amplified across open water.
* Think about leaving pets at home. The disorienting lights and loud sounds can cause anxiety in even the calmest animal. And there are already enough distractions for the captain and crew.
* Find a good spot well before the show starts. Whether you’re beaching, rafting with other boats, or dropping anchor in open water, you will not regret getting there a little early and staking your claim while there’s still some daylight.
* For the safety of your passengers and other boaters, keep alcohol off limits for the captain.
* Don’t add to the show. That means turning off all non-required lights onboard and never launch your own fireworks from the boat. It just detracts from the viewing experience for your boat and everyone around you.
* Keep your radio off or turned down. There will be plenty of ambient noise and sounds to keep you occupied.
* Don’t be in a hurry to leave. Most accidents happen when there’s a mad dash back to the dock. Often the ones in a hurry have not heeded the advice to stay away from the holiday “spirits.” You’ve already taken the time to get set up and properly anchored. Enjoy the mass exodus and a sky full of stars while the crowds file out of the area.
   Enjoy the fireworks and be safe on the water!

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