Safety Tip: On the Spokane River


As our weather finally warms up, this is a good time to remind everyone to use caution around the Spokane River. The river is running at a higher flow this year than it normally does at this time of year, due to an increased mountain snow pack and later run-off. If you decide to float the river, we encourage you to do it safely!

  • Check river and stream conditions before heading out on your adventure.
  • Know that water temperatures can be deceptive. Air temperatures may feel hot and the water may feel or appear warm, but temperatures can be extremely cold below the surface. Hypothermia can quickly set in and overwhelm even the strongest of swimmers.
  • Never swim or float alone. There is safety in numbers.
  • Always let someone know where you are going and when you will return.
  • Wear a properly fitted personal flotation device (life jacket) for all river activities. Don’t assume you have the swimming skills to keep you afloat – even the strongest swimmers can drown. A Spokane County ordinance requires boaters and floaters to wear life jackets between the Idaho state line and Plante’s Ferry Park.
  • Do not try to stand up if you fall into fast-moving water. The force of the water may push you over or cause your foot to become trapped in the rocks along the bottom of the river. Watch for undercurrents.
  • Avoid using alcohol or other intoxicating substances

Read more about water safety.

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