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911 Addresses on Docks

State law says by January all docks will have to have 911 addresses. A bill requiring 911 addresses to be displayed on docks on lakes with at least 950 miles of shoreline or on lakes constructed or maintained by the United States Army Corps of Engineers with certain specified exceptions, that face the channel or cove was approved by the state legislature and has been signed by the governor. The law will take effect on Jan. 1, 2010. In the near future, all docks on Lake of the Ozarks will not only have to have the permit numbers issued by AmerenUE, but also the nearest 911 address.

The law will require docks to display the nearest 911 address on the lake side in a location most visible from the channel or cove. The bill requires letters to be at least three-inch block style lettering in a color contrasting the background.

Missouri State Water Patrol Captain Matt Walz says the type of sign needed can be found with the local lake manager. “As far as Lake of the Ozarks, Ameren UE has been very good about being involved with the process and they already have good sign that’s on their website now that shows basically what will be required.” “So if you stick with Ameren’s recommendations there I believe people will be in pretty good shape.” Ameren’s website shows a 24 by 14 inch sign with three inch letters. The site says the block lettering should contrast with the background. The sign must also be eight tenths aluminum or equivalent and must be posted in the most visible spot on the lake side of the dock.

Missouri State Water Patrol Captain Matt Walz said the addressing issue is long overdue. It is something emergency and rescue personnel have wanted but until now haven’t had an avenue to make it mandatory. Any measure that aids in cutting the time it takes to respond to an emergency is good for Lake of the Ozarks. Reducing response time by minutes can save a life, Walz said. It is common for lake area fire districts and the Water Patrol to respond to emergencies by water. With addressing, the different agencies will be able to coordinate locations with their counterparts on land. Officers responding to calls often have trouble following the directions given by visitors who may not be familiar with the area and/or at night when landmarks used for directional guides can’t be seen, Walz said.

911 Sign Requirements Link:
Ameren UE Lake of the Ozarks Dock 911 Requirements
Source: Lake Sun Leader