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Lebanon life jacket kiosk closed for winter
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Lebanon life jacket kiosk closed for winter

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The Lebanon Fire District's life jacket kiosks have closed for the winter, but the agency believes its personal floatation devices were used nearly 400 times by residents this summer. 

Swimming and boating season has come to an end in Lebanon. The life jacket kiosks at the Gill’s Landing, Waterloo North and Waterloo South boat ramps have been emptied, cleaned and locked for the winter, according to the Lebanon Fire District.

The district took in 188 waiver forms for life jackets this year, estimating that actual usage was about twice that number based on the tracking of jackets that were used without waiver forms.

The life jacket kiosks debuted in summer 2019. The district said in the two years since, it has only had three water rescue calls. One call occurred during the off-season when the kiosks were closed. Prior to the kiosks, the average was just over two water rescues a year. There were no calls for water rescues in 2020.

“We are really proud of the impact that this program has had on the community,” Deputy Fire Marshal Ken Foster said. “We believe that as the program continues on, we will be able to see clear data evidence that increased life jacket use decreases the need for water rescues in our community.”

The life jackets will be washed, dried and vacuumed sealed for storage during the winter months. Weather permitting, the kiosks will reopen next spring, most likely around Memorial Day Weekend, according to the district.

If you still have a life jacket checked out you’re encouraged to bring it to the administration office at 550 S. Main St. (MBVA Building) and turn it in, no questions asked.

“We know sometimes things get lost or misplaced,” Foster said. “But our hope is that when people are cleaning out the boat or the garage, they’ll find an LFD marked life jacket and bring it back.”

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