BLORA beach to reopen without lifeguards with swim at your own risk in place
Previously needing lifeguards to open the beach, approval has been given to swim without the safety measure.
BELTON LAKE, Texas (KWTX) - The Beach at Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area will be reopening to the public, this weekend, after being closed for the past three years.
“We’ve gone through and done a lot of painting and fixing it up and sprucing things up to open it up. It’s been closed for many years, so it needed a lot of work,” Dennis Bass, Park Manager said.
When you visit BLORA beach the renovations are easy to spot.
What won’t be so easy to find are lifeguards.
“We are a swim at your own risk,” Thoman Kenney, Outdoor Recreation Chief for Fort Cavazos said. That means if you don’t know how to swim, make sure you have life jackets on.”
“That was a big problem as far as lifeguards, getting lifeguards for the facility and that’s nationwide,” Bass said.
Previously if you wanted to swim at BLORA, a lifeguard had to be on duty; no lifeguard and the beach closed.
Now with approval from Fort Cavazos, the beach can welcome guests even without a lifeguard.
“With the swim at your own risk people can actually get in the water and all the other parks have gone to that concept,” Bass said.
Unless it’s a special event, you’ll rarely find any lifeguards on Belton Lake, a practice becoming more common as the lifeguard shortage deepens.
We’ve got throw buoys and reach polls that people can use that are set up for the guests to use as well,” Kenney said.
When you arrive at BLORA Beach, you’ll notice new signs along the beach with assorted warning signs.
They’re meant to keep you safe but in case something more serious happens, emergency crews are just minutes away.
“Just about everybody carries a cell phone with them nowadays. If there’s a problem, dial 911. We’re maybe 10 minutes from Belton Ems and Fort Cavazos can get out here in 15 minutes,” Bass said.
The beach will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. during the BLORA Beach Bash reopening on Saturday. On normal days swimming is permitted from dusk till dawn.
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