YOU'RE RESPONSIBLE: WATCH YOUR WAKE!
All watercraft can create waves, but a wake created in the wrong place can be costly to your wallet and dangerous to those in the vicinity.
You're responsible for your wake
The Texas Water Safety Code states a boat operator is always responsible for the wake caused by a boat until it flattens out. This is true for all boats, including borrowed or rentals.
• If a wake created by your boat causes a child to be bounced off a nearby dock, you can be held legally responsible for that injury.
• Or, if a wake created by your boat causes damage to a dock or walkway, you can be held legally and monetarily responsible.
No Wake Zones
There are portions of the lake where boats and personal watercraft are not allowed to create a wake.
These "No Wake" zones, marked by buoys, indicate areas where boats and personal watercraft must operate at a slow headway speed that does not create a wake or swell.
This zone includes areas within 50 feet of the shoreline, boathouse, dock or other lakeshore facilities, including an occupied watercraft or area where people are swimming or diving. For more on No Wake Zones, go here.
BRA lake rangers routinely issue citations to violators of No Wake Zones. The Class C ticket could cost a boater up to $500.
Slowing down is much easier on your wallet than being confronted with a ticket or with costly repairs to another person's property.
It's Texas Law
Per Texas law, it is unlawful for anyone to:
• Operate a personal watercraft and jump the wake of another vessel recklessly or unnecessarily close.
• Operate so as to cause a hazardous wake or wash.
• Operate within designated "no wake" areas except at headway speed without creating a swell or wake.
A few tips from Boating Magazine
• Slow down whenever passing within 500 feet of a small boat, the shoreline or a marina, even if there are no posted no-wake zones. Distances beyond that allow the wake's waves to spread out and get rounder, disrupting other boats less and causing less erosion.
• Slow down in advance. Chopping the throttles while arriving doesn't alleviate the wake's effect.
• When in a no-wake speed, remember neutral trim allows your boat to proceed with the smallest wake.
• Larger boats can go 10 mph while idling in gear due to large props.
Enjoy the reservoir, just remember to Watch Your Wake.