Private Swimming Areas

Once you receive your permit authorizing the placement of your swimming area buoys; the permit will be valid until one or more of the following occurs:
  • When your address or location of the temporary structure changes; or
  • When your permission from the property / landowner is revoked
  • When your structure is found to be non-compliant with the policies and/or regulations set forth
Safety First
The Sheriff’s Office Water Patrol takes great care to ensure the safe navigation of all persons using the public waters of Otter-Tail County, to accomplish this, Deputies will inspect and monitor your swim area to ensure that it is in compliance with the following regulations and guidelines, Rule 6110.1600:
  • The permit holder may mark off up to 2,500 square feet for the swim area
  • The swim area must be no more than 50 feet along the lake frontage
  • The swim area must be marked with buoys that are white in color with orange in color diamonds with crosses on each side
  • The buoys must also extend 6 inches out of the water and not taller than 14 inches. The buoys should also be spaced no more than 15 feet apart
  • The swim area cannot be a navigational danger to the general boating public
  • The structure must be removed by November 1st, so as not to create a hazard for developing ice and winter conditions
A white colored bleach bottle with the proper marking shown, on each side, fulfills the above requirements.

Structure Maintenance & Responsibility
Please understand that any structure placed in the public waters within Otter-Tail County remain your responsibility to maintain. This however, does not prevent someone from using your structure. By issuing you a temporary structure permit, Otter-Tail County, by Rule of Law, is not liable for any injuries or property damage by persons using, crashing into, or damage caused by, your temporary water structure. 

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