Environmental police: It’s okay to operate jet skis on North Pond

The North Pond is 47 acres

Photo Courtesy: Southwick Police Department

SOUTHWICK, Mass. (WWLP) – The town of Southwick held a meeting to address the police chief’s new policy to allow jet skis on the North Pond, Thursday night.

It’s a policy some residents don’t like. More than a dozen people gathered at Southwick Town Hall for the Lake Management Committee meeting.

Jet skis or personal watercraft have been prohibited on the North Pond for more than 20 years. Under state law, jet skis can only be used on bodies of water bigger than 75 acres.

The North Pond is 47 acres, but some residents say its one of the three basins that make up the entire Congamond Lake, and the police chief and environmental police agreed. A supporter told 22News the town’s longstanding ban was illegal.

“We went through the appropriate channels before we purchased the jet skis. We checked with the environmental police, we checked with the local police, we checked at the state level, they told us there were no concerns,” Nicholas Graveland, a supporter told 22News.

“It should have not gotten to this. This discussion should have happened before any decisions were made. Not after,” Richard Grannells, Chair of the Lake Management Committee said.

Environmental police told Southwick’s police chief that it was okay to operate jet skis on the North Pond, which was the basis of his decision.