Spartanburg Water and the Commissioners of Spartanburg Water are the advocates for and stewards of safe boating on Lake Bowen & Lake Blalock. Spartanburg Water and the Commissioners develop and implement policies and procedures for the utilization and protection of our reservoirs.
Spartanburg Water and the Commissioners are committed to the protection of the public that enjoys the use of Spartanburg Water reservoirs. Spartanburg Water and the Commissioners are proactive in protecting the natural resources for the use and enjoyment by future generations.
Boating Safety Tips
Whether you’re going to the lake for the first time or you grew up on the water, these tips will help keep you – and those around you – safe.
Before you come to the lake:
- Let someone know where you are going to be fishing or boating and when you will return.
- Check all personal flotation devices (PDF, i.e. life jackets) and make sure they are in good serviceable condition and are the correct sizes for all passengers (especially children).
- Check the weather before you go.
- Check fuel, battery and boat trailer (lights, tires and tie downs).
- Check to see if the drain plug is in the boat and whether or not you have the keys for the boat.
On the water:
- South Carolina law requires that all children under 12 years of age must wear a PFD (life jacket) if the watercraft is under 16 feet in length and when the motor is running.
- Have all PFDs out and accessible whenever out on the lake.
- Do not operate a boat under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Alcohol can affect you up to three times more on the water than on land.
- Personal watercraft may operate only from legal sunrise to legal sunset.
- When pulling someone on a tube or pulling a skier, you must have a mirror or an observer.
- Check all navigation lights before legal sunset. If not operating correctly, you will have time to return to the dock.
- Know your limitations, apply sunscreen, drink lots of water, and watch your energy level.
- Obey all regulatory markers (buoys) No Wake, Controlled Areas and Danger Area.
- Courtesy boat inspections are available upon request.
Other links to safe boating:
Boater Education Classes
Boaters under 16 years of age are required by South Carolina law to pass an approved boater education course to operate a personal watercraft (ex. jet ski) or a boat powered by 15 hp motor or more without adult (18+) supervision.
The course may also make you eligible for an insurance discount on your boat or personal watercraft (PWC).
Spartanburg Water holds multiple boater education classes each summer. 2018 classes will be posted here next spring.
If a student can not attend these classes they can take an internet course for $30 or order the Boat South Carolina video home-study course and mail-in test here.