Residents upset 'No Wake' signs may come down

Posted at 6:49 PM, Jan 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-20 07:26:19-05

Many residents who live along a Naples waterway are upset that the signs they say keep speeding boats to a minimum will be removed by state law.

Florida Fish & Wildlife, which has jurisdiction over state waterways, wants the "Idle Speed - No Wake" signs posted in Moorings Bay near Doctor's Pass removed, because the city doesn't have the authority to keep them there.

Despite the signs, Moorings Bay resident Ted Rojahn said that many boaters ignore the warning.

"I live right at the intersection of Doctor's Pass and Moorings Bay, and as a matter of fact I saw a SeaTow boat dragging a personal watercraft, speeding in there probably 25 knots," Rojahn said.

FWC has ordered the City of Naples to take down the "No Wake" signs.

"They want to control all the signs throughout the state," Naples mayor John Sorey said. "Talking to other mayors around the state, there's a lot of concerns that a lot of other signs are going to be challenged."

Naples is trying to work out a change in the signage with the state, which would read "You are responsible for your wake - reckless operation strictly enforced."

Even with the current signs, Rojahn said he has seen residents shout at speeding boaters to slow.

"They're frequently given a flip of the finger, and people know they can violate the speed limits," Rojahn said.

Naples city council members discussed the matter for hours at a workshop Tuesday, and will talk more about how to proceed with the signage at Wednesday's regular council meeting.