SALT RIVER, AZ (3TV/CBS5) -- More than 2,000 tubers hit the Salt River Saturday for the first official day of the 2020 Salt River Tubing season. In fact, some 2,100 people were reported to have floated down our state's scenic river. It's actually the 40-year anniversary of this Arizona tradition.
But tubing this year is going to look a bit different, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. Guests will have to wear a mask when renting tubes. You can bring your own or take one of the bandannas the staff will hand out for guests to keep. You have to wear the face covering while on line and when you are on the bus to and from the river.
The bus capacity will be dramatically reduced as well, which could make for longer waits. Instead of 72 riders, only 15 riders will be allowed on a bus at a time, according to Lynda Breault with Salt River Tubing. And although the tubes themselves won't be sanitized, teams will sanitize the buses with hospital grade disinfectants each night.
And she says she hopes tubers will be responsible out on the water. “They have all been watching television and know what social distancing means,” Breault said. “So it is their responsibility to practice social distancing on the lower Salt River.”
Breault said they will also be checking temps of employees when they show up for work.
The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office also has a reminder about the Arizona heat. "People need to make sure they stay very hydrated and drink plenty of water.
To find out more information, head to the Salt River tubing website.