LA CROSSE, Wis. (WXOW) – With the Mississippi River at moderate flood stage in La Crosse, the city’s no wake rules are in affect. While this is an every year occurrence, police say some boaters violate the rules every year.
“Most of the boaters are very respectful of that and they understand there’s quite a bit of damage that can be created in these no wake areas or due to these flooded conditions,” Sgt. Tom Walsh said.
“We do get a number of complaints with pictures. We do follow up on those. We will make contact and if enforcement action is necessary, we certainly will take it,” he added.
However across the river on the Minnesota side, there is no rule
“What you have to rely on is people using common sense,” Jack Miller, who lives on Shore Acres Road in La Crescent said. “Unfortunately there’s an element that doesn’t.”
Miller, who’s also the Houston County Commissioner for District One, says a lot of neighbors have seen damages to their docks or boats because of the wakes caused during high water conditions. It also erodes the land faster.
“If you are living there, you are losing your yard,” Miller added. “It’s just a resource that doesn’t replace itself.”
Sgt. Walsh reminds boaters the rules also are there for safety reasons as the fast currents pull a lot of debris.
“At any moment in time, you can hit something out there that you weren’t expecting or something that wasn’t here ten minutes ago,” he explained.
Miller hopes boaters think of everyone if they use the water during high waters.
“Don’t say ‘Oh well we can do it over here just cause there isn’t a sign.’ The river is just as high over here,” Miller added.
Miller says he’s going to try again and see if they can get no wake signs put up near Shore Acres Road. For the city of La Crosse, if you are found to have violated the no wake zone. You would face a fine of $67.