Buckeye Lake Designates New Speed Zone, Towing Watersports Prohibited

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The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is changing boating rules at Buckeye Lake while it’s kept at winter levels.

The ODNR will designate and mark a specific Speed Zone on the western portion of the lake to allow boaters to move faster than idle speed. It’s a move that the department hopes will increase safety awareness and promote recreational activity.

This comes after a U.S. Army Corp of Engineers report warned of a catastrophic dam failure, forcing the state to keep Buckeye Lake at winter pool levels.

The rest of the lake will be treated as a No Wake Zone.

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The Speed Zone is in effect from sunrise to sunset, and it becomes a No Wake Zone after sunset.

“No question, Buckeye Lake will be a gem in the state of Ohio once a new dam is in place, but I want to remind everyone that the lake is still open for business,” ODNR Director James Zehringer said in a press release. “Making these improvements gives us a new opportunity to promote recreational activities such as kayaking and paddling on the lake while investing more in the health and future of the region.”

Towing watersports will not be permitted anywhere on the lake, and ODNR will post new signs at boat launches and around the lake to remind boaters about the changes. The department also has increased staff around the area to focus on education and to serve as an additional reminder for boaters.

Dredging activity has started on Buckeye Lake, and areas of active dredging will be labeled by floating markers. The equipment strips a layer of the lake bottom off, removing silt.