Law enforcement agencies from around the region are teaming up on a two-day crackdown along the American and Sacramento Rivers near Discovery Park.The enforcement effort known as the Delta Blitz is coordinated by the U.S, Coast Guard and involves 10 different law enforcement agencies.
The main goal of the crackdown is education.
Officers target boaters for a variety of safety violations such as speeding, boating under the influence, lacking enough life vests, and lacking registration.The crackdown in Sacramento is the last of three Delta Blitz crackdowns the Coast Guard operates throughout the Delta.In June, officers ran a similar operation in San Joaquin County.
They also ran a Delta Blitz in Contra Costa County in July.Since the Coast Guard began the operation in 2008, a spokesman for the department estimates the number of citations being written by officers has decreased by one-third.
In Yolo County, officers estimate they have written nearly 80 percent fewer citations for boating under the influence than in previous years.”I’d like to think we can attribute it to our enforcement.
We’ve taken a proactive step at reducing the alcohol related incidents. People know we are going to be out here, and we are going to be doing enforcement,” said Deputy Rial Price, with the Yolo County Sheriff’s Department.
Boaters on the water Saturday said they have noticed more officers on the water in recent years.
The final environmental impact report on the Nimbus Hatchery Fish Passage Project has been released by the federal Bureau of Reclamation and California Department of Fish and Game for public review.
The agencies propose to extend the fish ladder from the hatchery to the Nimbus Dam stilling basin, using the basin itself to hold and divert fish to the ladder.
Under this proposal, the existing weir would be permanently removed and the Department of Fish and Game would recommend changes in local fishing regulations to the California Fish and Game Commission, according to a news release.
The Nimbus Fish Hatchery is along the lower American River, a quarter-mile downstream from Nimbus Dam.
A section of the American River Parkway near California State University, Sacramento, will be temporarily closed for a levee upgrade beginning Aug. 22.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that pedestrian and bicycle traffic will be detoured to an alternate trail from the Campus Commons golf course to about Ethan Way for up to nine weeks while a seepage cutoff wall is built in the levee at the end of Northrop Avenue, near Howe Avenue. Signs have been posted along the trail noting that the detour will be in place for the duration of the construction, scheduled for completion by Oct. 17.
The Corps of Engineers built more than 20 miles of cutoff walls into American river levees between 2000 and 2002 as part of a joint project with the Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency. Areas where construction was complicated by utilities, bridges or power lines were set aside for later construction, leaving gaps in the walls, according to a Corps news release.
Because a life jacket that does not fit properly can put a person at risk of drowning, the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary has a few tips when choosing a life jacket.
• Choose only a life jacket approved by the U.S. Coast Guard and the correct size for the weight of the person. The U.S.C.G. stamp of approval, size, whether it is for a child or an adult, and appropriate weight of the wearer should be listed inside the jacket. A person’s chest size and stomach size may come into play when selecting the right life jacket.
• Use the “touchdown” test to see if your life jacket fits properly: Lift your arms above your head as if signaling a touchdown. The chest portion of the jacket should not touch your chin when you look left, right or over your shoulder. If the jacket passes this test, it most likely fits. If possible, try it in shallow water. The life jacket should not ride up on your body. However, ride-up may happen if your stomach is larger than your chest.
• Weigh a child and measure for chest size under the arms before shopping for a child’s life jacket. A properly fitting jacket should be snug but not tight.
• Check for proper fit of a life jacket on a child. Wearing the jacket, the child should stand normally with arms at his or her sides. Grab the jacket at the shoulders and firmly lift. The jacket does not fit if it moves more than three inches up and down the child’s body during the test.
• Ensure a life jacket for an infant or child has a crotch strap to help keep the life jacket on, an oversized float collar to help keep the head out of the water and a grab loop for easier water rescue. All straps should be intact and fastened at all times.
The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary is the uniformed volunteer component of the U.S. Coast Guard.
Flows in the American River below Nimbus Dam will be decreased Tuesday and Wednesday for maintenance and installation of a fish weir structure at the Nimbus Fish Hatchery in Rancho Cordova.
The federal Bureau of Reclamation announced that flows will be temporarily decreased from 3,500 cubic feet per second to as low as 1,000 cfs to perform maintenance and prepare the hatchery weir foundation for installation of the weir’s super structure.
Working hours will be from approximately 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day. The bureau will increase flows at 4 p.m. Tuesday to 2,500 cfs and at 4 p.m. Wednesday, to 3,500 cfs. If necessary, maintenance flows could extend into Thursday, according to a bureau news release.
The scene on the American River today bore striking similarities to the “Rafting Gone Wild” event of two weeks ago. There were questionable decisions, illegal activities and plenty of booze. What was different? The complete lack of law enforcement.
“I’m an excellent swimmer and all of my friends are, but you might need a couple of them in case for the dumb-dumbs,” said rafter Ian Gilman.
After re-arranging the schedules of already bare bones police and fire agencies, departments said they wouldn’t do the same for this latest Facebook generated event — despite 5,000 people who RSVP’d “yes” to a day of drinking and rafting and 60 swift water river rescues last go round.
At American River Raft Rentals, the influx of customers was steady, but not record-breaking. Missing from the river were the hoards of people, replaced by a more laid-back fun loving atmosphere.
Authorities are discussing the possibility of permanently banning alcohol along the American River every day of the year.
Currently, alcohol is prohibited during holidays.
“I don’t know that we’ve reached the point where we have to ruin it for everyone” Sacramento County Supervisor Phil Serna said. “It would require a joint effort between the state of California – who governs the actual water – and the adjacent acreage is under the oversight of the county.”
The 38th Eppie’s Great Race is set for Saturday morning. The Sacramento-born triathlon features running, bicycling and kayaking.
The race starts with a 5.8 mile run, 12.5 miles on a bicycle, and 6.4 miles racing on the American River in a kayak.
More than 2,000 people participated in 2010. A similar crowd is expected this year, and registration remains open until 6:30 the morning of the race, near the starting line at the William Pond Recreation area along the American River.