New rules for rafters

July 04, 2005 12:00 am
Changes are in store for commercial rafters. In the photo at left, during a private raft trip (not affected by the new law), Jason Stone of Baker City prepares to "shoot'' Wild Sheep rapids on the Snake River. Joining him on a float through Hells Canyon are Terri Berthelsen, left, Kathryn Gilsdorf and Cynthia Newman. (Baker City Herald/S. John Collins).
Changes are in store for commercial rafters. In the photo at left, during a private raft trip (not affected by the new law), Jason Stone of Baker City prepares to "shoot'' Wild Sheep rapids on the Snake River. Joining him on a float through Hells Canyon are Terri Berthelsen, left, Kathryn Gilsdorf and Cynthia Newman. (Baker City Herald/S. John Collins).

A new Oregon law requires commercial river guides to first tour a river and get rescue training before ferrying patrons.

The law also requires all passengers, including guides, to wear flotation vests in rapids that are rated Class 3 or higher, and require all boats to carry rescue gear known as throw bags.

Those bags contain rope that can be thrown to a passenger who has fallen into the water and is being swept downstream.