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Lake County Deploys Boat Cleaning Station, Empowering Boaters to Take Action Against Aquatic Hitchhikers

Lake County announces installation of free, boater operated CD3 Cleaning System kiosk at the Silver Bay Safe Harbor Public Water Access to clean, drain and dry watercraft and trailers.

The new CD3 Cleaning System kiosk at Silver Bay’s Safe Harbor public water access. (Submitted Photo)

Silver Bay, MN – May 9, 2023 – Lake County has a new tool in its fight against aquatic invasive species (AIS) like spiny wa­terflea — thanks to the installation of a water­less, boater-operated system to clean, drain and dry watercraft and trailers, then dispose of water, weeds and debris. A CD3 Cleaning System, free for all to use, has been installed at the Silver Bay Safe Harbor Public Water Access.

This CD3 station was made possible through Minnesota AIS prevention aid al­located to Lake County as well as funding from NOAA and Minnesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program granted to Lake County Soil & Water Conservation District (SWCD).

CD3 stands for “Clean, Drain, Dry and Dis­pose,” because the system provides a clean­ing infrastructure for boaters to clean, drain, and dry their own boats and trailers. The standalone unit offers a suite of self-service resources, including an air blower, wet-dry vacuum, hand tools, and lights to help boat­ers remove, then dispose of, water, weeds, and debris — including leftover bait. The sta­tions serve as educational kiosks and prompt boaters to take action while they are parked in the dedicated tie-down lane.

Invasive species are non-native species of­ten accidentally introduced into a body of wa­ter by people, who bring them on boats from other bodies of water. They can outcompete and displace native plant and animal species, thereby disrupting food webs and impacting natural resource use by people. Research has also shown that AIS have negative impacts on water quality, including nutrient cycling and mercury levels in fish.

“Lake Superior is known to be infested with many aquatic invasive species, including ze­bra mussels and spiny waterflea,” says Liz Anderson, AIS Program Coordinator at Lake County SWCD. “The Lake Superior coastal zone is also home to several popular recre­ational inland lakes that are not, at present, infested with AIS. These lakes are vulnerable to future infestations, and boaters may inad­vertently transport AIS to them from nearby infested Lake Superior if they don’t clean their watercraft and equipment.”

“That’s why we are thrilled to offer our community this conveniently located, free, self-serve waterless cleaning system from CD3 Systems. Whether your boat is a cruiser or a kayak, you should always clean, drain, dry, and properly dispose of bait. Keeping your boat free from invasive species, and not dumping bait keeps lakes, rivers, and streams healthy, providing better places to fish and swim.”

For more information on the new Silver Bay CD3 System, email Liz.Anderson@co.lake.mn.us.  

CD3 Systems installations and education­al services are an effective tool in the fight against aquatic invasive species. Self-serve units installed by organizations across the U.S. are free to use, available 24/7, and em­power boaters to clean, drain, dry their boats and trailers, then dispose of water, waste, debris, and bait. For more information visit cd3systems.com.

For this CD3 project, Lake SWCD received a grant from the Office for Coastal Manage­ment, NOAA, through the Minnesota Depart­ment of Natural Resources (DNR) for Min­nesota’s Lake Superior Coastal Program and received match funding from Lake County’s AIS prevention aid.

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