US Army Corps of Engineers
Vicksburg District

Corps Encourages Playing it Safe for Fourth of July

Published July 1, 2014
The Vicksburg District encompasses a 68,000-square-mile area across portions of Mississippi, Arkansas, and Louisiana that holds seven major river basins and incorporates approximately 460 miles of mainline levees. The district is engaged in hundreds of projects and supports disaster response in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee.

The Vicksburg District encompasses a 68,000-square-mile area across portions of Mississippi, Arkansas, and Louisiana that holds seven major river basins and incorporates approximately 460 miles of mainline levees. The district is engaged in hundreds of projects and supports disaster response in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee.

Vicksburg, Miss… The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers is encouraging everyone to have fun during the Fourth of July holiday, but most importantly, stay safe.

The Corps hosts 370 million visitors annually at its more than 400 lake and river projects where people enjoy fishing, boating, hiking and more. While outdoor recreation is fun and healthy, the Corps urges visitors to expect the unexpected and think about these four safety tips this Fourth of July:

*Wear a life jacket - Statistics show that 90 percent of those who drown at Corps lakes and rivers may have
survived if they had worn a life jacket.

*Know your swimming ability - Swimming in open water is more difficult than in a swimming pool because a
swimmer can tire more quickly and get into trouble. Conditions can change quickly in open water.

*Be a “Water Watcher.” -When on or near the water watch your children. A child can drown in 20 seconds.
Drowning happens quickly and quietly. A drowning victim’s head will be back; they will be gasping for air,
they will not be yelling, and their arms will be slapping the water as though trying to climb out of the water.

*Avoid exhaust fumes around boats. Carbon monoxide, an invisible killer, can accumulate anywhere in or
around boats regardless of what type of boat. Install and maintain carbon monoxide detectors. Maintain a
fresh circulation of air through and around your boat at all times. Early symptoms of carbon monoxide
poisoning include eye irritation, headache, nausea, weakness and dizziness. Avoid areas around boats where
exhaust fumes may be present. Do not let friends swim under or around the boarding platform where fumes can accumulate.

Located approximately 30 minutes south of Memphis, Tennessee, Arkabutla Lake is the nearest Corps project to that metropolitan area. Receiving approximately 2 million visitors a year, the lake accommodates a variety of recreational opportunities throughout the year. Currently, Arkabutla Lake is experiencing high water, approximately 10 feet above normal summer pool. It has three Class A Campgrounds with 230 campsites complete with electricity; water, showers, flush comfort stations, and dump stations. There are two developed sand beaches. Hernando Point Beach is closed due to high water, only South Abutment Beach is open at this time.

For additional information you may contact the Arkabutla Lake Field Office at (662) 562-6261.

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Contact
Shirley Smith
601-631-5223
shirley.j.smith@usace.army.mil

Release no. 14-056