This information comes from the FWC, and may now be a bit dated, but some remains pertinent.
Comments by OSFR historian Jim Tatum.
-A river is like a life: once taken, it cannot be brought back-
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Sept. 26, 2017
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Idle-speed, no-wake restrictions lifted on Santa Fe River’s Zone 7; other three zones still being enforced
Idle-speed, no-wake restrictions on Santa Fe River’s Zone 7 was deactivated today, but the other three idle-speed, no-wake zones remain activated due to flooding from Hurricane Irma, according to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) officials.
Zone 7 becomes an idle-speed, no-wake zone when the Three Rivers gauge reaches 18.75 feet. This zone runs from .5 mile upstream from the State Road 47 Bridge, downstream to an unnamed island at 29° 54.527’ N, 82° 46.074’ W. Today, the gauge is at 17.91.
“The river’s water levels are falling, but speed restrictions in zones 5, 6 and 8 are still in effect,” said Capt. Martin Redmond, area supervisor. “Our officers are continuing their patrols. Public safety is paramount as we continue our storm response to get Floridians back to working and recreating in Florida.”
Zone 5 runs from the Santa Fe River at the River Rise in O’Leno State Park downstream to the centerline of the U.S. 27 Bridge when the river is 34.2 feet or higher on the High Springs gauge. Today, the gauge is at 35.40 feet.
Zone 6 is from the centerline of the U.S. 27 Bridge downstream to .5 mile upstream from the State Road 47 Bridge when the river is 23.25 feet or higher on the Fort White gauge. Today, the gauge is at 25.32 feet.
Zone 8 begins at an unnamed islandapproximately 4.25 miles upstream from the confluence of the Santa Fe and Ichetucknee rivers (coordinates: 29° 54.527’ N, 82° 46.074’ W) and ends at the confluence of the Suwannee and Santa Fe rivers. This includes the Ichetucknee River upstream to the U.S. 27 Bridge. This zone activates when the Three Rivers gauge reaches 16.25 feet. Today, the gauge is at 17.91.
An idle-speed, no-wake zone means a vessel must proceed at a speed no greater than what is required to maintain steerageway and headway. At no time is any vessel required to proceed so slowly that the operator is unable to control it or anything it may be towing.
The other idle-speed, no-wake zones on the Suwannee River:
- Zone 1: From the U.S. 90 Bridge at Ellaville south to the State Road 51 Bridge at Luraville. This 39-mile segment becomes an idle-speed, no-wake zone when the Suwannee River reaches 46.25 feet or more above mean sea level at the Ellaville gauge.
- Zone 2: From the S.R. 51 Bridge at Luraville to Little River Spring. This 18-mile segment becomes an idle-speed, no-wake zone when the Suwannee River reaches 25.25 feet or more at the Branford gauge.
- Zone 3: Runs from Little River Spring to the County Road 340 Bridge at Rock Bluff. This 23-mile segment becomes an idle-speed, no-wake zone when the Suwannee River reaches 23.25 feet at the Branford gauge.
- Zone 4: From the centerline of the C.R. 340 Bridge at Rock Bluff to approximately 300 feet southwest of the New Clay Landing Boat Ramp, from approximately 6,000 feet north of the Camp Azalea Boat Ramp to approximately 1,300 feet south of the Yellow Jacket Landing, and from approximately 2,000 feet northeast of the Fowler’s Bluff Boat Ramp to approximately 1 mile southwest of the Fowler’s Bluff Boat Ramp when the river level is 8.35 feet or higher on the Wilcox gauge.
For more information about the flood zones, call 386-758-0525. To report violations, call 888-404-3922.
To obtain real-time river level information, visit MySuwanneeRiver.com.