Committee to develop tubing regulations

People enjoying a lazy day on the river. (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

TOWNSEND, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Townsend officials want to look at regulations to make tubing safer on the Little River.

Paul Jordan with Tube Junction, says this week they've been closed for three days because his company felt the water was too high for tubers. That's while other tubing companies have taken people out. He says regulations will make it safer for everyone.

"It's not a lazy river. It's a very unpredictable river it changes moment by moment," said Jordan. "This is an enjoyment people come on vacation to have an enjoyment. Not to have a tragedy."

Jordan says first time tubers need to pay extra attention and know what is involved with tubing the river.

Rescue crews say that's just part of what they want all companies to follow. Right now Townsends fire chief says tube companies are self regulated.

"A lot of the people that were rescued just didn't know what they were getting into. And didn't understand the dangers and how the river can change and how quickly it can change," said Chief Don Stallions. "Also to have the proper equipment and that everyone is wearing a life jacket and that they understand just what type of environment they're putting themselves and their family into."

Stallions hopes to work with tube companies and Blount County to develop the regulations.

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