Officials Warn Kayakers Against Riding on the Handlebars

WEST CHARLESTON – As summer kicks into high gear in Vermont, with temperatures approaching 70 degrees this weekend, officials are taking the opportunity to remind kayakers about the dangers of riding on the handlebars. State workers will be out and about today handing out pamphlets on boating safety at the Clyde River, Crystal Lake, Lake Willoughby, and other top kayaking spots. Despite the known dangers of carrying a passenger on the kayak’s handlebars, many people still engage in this risky behavior.

“I get it,” said Milt Leshay, Vermont’s Head of Kayak Affairs. “You wanna impress your buddies, you think you’re invincible, but lemme tell you, you’re not.You’re gonna hit some rough waters, and what happens then? You think you can keep your balance with somebody up there? You think they’re going to stay up? Every year we see people, kids mostly, college kids, falling off and hitting themselves on rocks, logs, what have you. It’s not illegal to do it, but it’s not safe either. Don’t be a statistic.”

More information on kayak safety can be found on the VT Kayak Affairs website, or in the official boating laws and responsibilities handbook.

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