State officials are warning boaters that Indiana's lingering drought is making some public boat ramps unsafe, particularly along rivers.
The state Department of Natural Resources says shallow waters have raised the risk that boaters could damage their boat trailers or get them stuck in mud while trying to get their vessels down boat ramps and into waterways.
State Fish and Wildlife fisheries specialist Jamie Smyth says some boat ramps are currently only suitable for launching canoes, kayaks and small, hand-carried boats because of low water levels.
The DNR maintains hundreds of boat ramps across Indiana, but it does not monitor water levels at each site. Smyth says once boaters launch their boats they need to exercise extra caution to avoid rocks and other obstacles exposed by the low waters.