Think twice before diving in

Think twice before diving in

Summer is here and we’re all looking for ways to cool off. 

Lakeside activities sound like the perfect way to spend an afternoon, but make sure those activities don’t ruin a beautiful day. Keep in mind swimming in nature adds some safety issues one can easily avoid with a little forethought.

Pools are great for diving, but it’s not as safe to dive or jump from high heights into water supply reservoirs like Possum Kingdom Lake, Lake Granbury, and Lake Limestone. 

People made these water supply reservoirs, and when they did, they left trees and rock formations in what is now your favorite watering hole. Underwater hazards mark the bottoms of these lakes, creating a potentially dangerous situation for someone who thinks, “it’s just one dive.” These lakes weren’t built in a bowl-like fashion. Each lake varies in depth throughout the reservoir. So, where it may be deep in one area doesn’t guarantee it’ll be deep in another.

Since these three Brazos River Authority lakes are water supply reservoirs, the water level is never constant. A lake whose water levels fluctuate daily can catch visitors not paying attention to how deep a stump, boulder or drop-off might be.

Look before you leap. One could suffer great injury by jumping into water that is too shallow, jumping from a height too high or in an inappropriate location.

Typically, swimming areas are much too shallow for safe diving. Dive only in areas you know to be deep enough and where it is not prohibited. Diving or jumping into the lakes from a height of 20 feet or more is prohibited, as well as from public highways, bridges, or any other structure not privately owned.

Always be aware of weather conditions while on the water, and always swim with a friend. Leave the alcohol at home. According to the Centers for Disease Control and

Prevention, an average of 4,012 unintentional drowning deaths occurred each year from 2011–2020.

There are so many ways to have fun at the lake. Don’t let one very preventable incident ruin a good time.

Following a few precautions can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience while cooling off at the lake.