Avista Corp

Avista reminds you to be safe when enjoying area rivers this summer

June 21, 2019

Emergency whistles and personal floatation devices serve as a reminder to be safe when on the river and around Spokane River dams 

SPOKANE, Wash.; June 21, 2019: Today marks the first day of summer, and Avista wants you to be safe while enjoying the recreation activities on area reservoirs and waterways. Avista owns and operates six dams on a 71-mile stretch of the Spokane River. These dams not only provide clean renewable hydropower, they create many recreational activities for our community to enjoy.

To assist in keeping people safely and legally on the river this year, Avista has provided personal floatation devices and safety whistles to the Spokane County Sheriff Marine Division to serve as reminders of the importance of safe recreation near dams and provide tools to comply with local ordinances.

Avista would like to remind you that waters near a dam contain hidden dangers. Swirling water, submerged objects, strong currents and open spill gates pose serious hazards to boaters and swimmers. Sudden discharges of water from spillways and turbines can also rapidly increase water levels and river flow below a dam.



To protect yourself when recreating on or along a reservoir or river near a dam, follow these safety tips:

  • Obey all posted warning and closure signs.
  • Never cross the boater safety cable above a dam. Strong currents could pull you through an open spillway gate or into an intake area.
  • Be alert for debris, obstructions and partially submerged objects.
  • Never fish, swim, play or anchor your boat in the area above or below a dam.
  • Look out for overhead bridges, cables and power lines.
  • Always wear a PFD/life jacket when on the water.

As of June 3, 2018 Spokane Municipal Code 16A.60.040 came into effect.  Stating: All persons on a vessel, regardless of age, shall wear a United States Coast Guard (USCG) approved Type I, Type II, Type III or Type V PFD while on moving water.

About Avista Utilities
Avista Utilities is involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy. We provide energy services and electricity to 388,000 customers and natural gas to 355,000 customers in a service territory that covers 30,000 square miles in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and parts of southern and eastern Oregon, with a population of 1.6 million.  Avista Utilities is an operating division of Avista Corp. (NYSE: AVA). For more information, please visit www.myavista.com.

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