Practice Safe Boating, Especially With High Waters and Upcoming Holiday

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JOHNSTON, Iowa  --  Authorities are urging anyone who plans to be on the water for the upcoming Fourth of July holiday to be safe.

Operation Dry Water, the initiative emphasizing safe and sober boating, kicks off on Friday.

Children ages 12 and younger are required by law to wear a life jacket on a boat, and everyone on board or even near water should have access to one. Boaters should also be sure to have a way to call or signal for help if they find themselves in trouble.

The Iowa DNR says lake levels are currently high, so it can be dangerous for boats and people to be on the water.

"We have lots of debris coming down through the lake. We've got full size trees, we've got piles of debris. A lot of it is just below the surface of the water that you can't see," said Dustin Eighmy of the DNR. "Last weekend, people were still skiing and people were coming in with tubes deflated because of debris and hitting it. Very, very dangerous."

Only two boat ramps are currently open at Saylorville Lake because of the high water.

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