To grow, protect and support Tennessee's paddlesports outfitting businesses by improving members' financial viability, ensuring a fair and reasonable regulatory environment and enhancing members' ease of doing business.
June 2, 2020
Know Before You Go Paddling for Safety Sake
Since the Coronavirus pandemic led to shutdowns and restrictions on some leisure travel, the public has been flocking to the outdoors. Paddlecraft use of waterways has increased dramatically in 2020 with many self-guided paddlers using their own craft to visit the state’s rivers. Some paddlers do not have sufficient experience or are attempting to paddle rivers in high water conditions increasing the risks of a serious incident or water rescue.
Safety data shows that paddlers are much less likely to be involved in a serious incident when they go with a professional outfitter, in part because outfitters do not operate when water conditions are too treacherous for inexperienced paddlers. When a customer rents a canoe, kayak or inflatable they also receive a briefing on potential hazards and are issued a Coast Guard approved life-jacket.
The Tennessee Paddlesports Association (TPA) is offering a free set of briefing posters to the public in an effort to reduce the risks to inexperienced paddlers who venture out in their own canoe, kayak, paddleboard or inflatable.
TPA also urges paddlers to be considerate of other users and to avoid leaving their boats on ramps where they block access by other boaters. TPA has a set of Best Practices designed to diminish user conflicts.
The Tennessee Paddlesports Association is a state-wide association of outfitters providing paddlecraft rental equipment, instruction, and other services on Tennessee waterways under permits issued by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.
Watch the latest TWRA Commission meeting on potential rules affecting paddlesport outfitters
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Paddlesports Outfitters help Tennesseans and visitors reconnect with nature and truely enjoy the beautiful rivers and lakes throughout Tennessee.