With the annual Wichita River Festival approaching, the Arkansas River is suitable for recreational uses, a condition reflected in the green flags flying near the river. Recreation use is subject to the following advisory conditions:
• Avoid swallowing river water;
• Wash hands before putting them near your mouth for such uses as eating, drinking, or smoking;
• Wash arms and hands after getting out of the river;
• And people with open wounds should avoid contact with river water.
During the Wichita River Festival, the City of Wichita will display colored flags at the Douglas and Lewis Street bridges to inform festivalgoers about river water quality and flow based on daily testing. The City has established three advisory levels based on river flows and testing results.
• A blue flag signifies the river is fine for recreational activities.
• A green flag signifies the river is still suitable for use, but subject to advisory conditions.
• An orange flag signifies the river is not for public use due to an extraordinary event, like high river flows and velocities.
People participating in events on the water are urged to wear life preserves, follow safe boating practices, and avoid the use of alcohol. The City of Wichita will post the river advisory information on its website at www.wichita.gov
, click on Departments, Public Works & Utilities, and the Arkansas River under the “Environment” tab.