ROCK HILL, SC — Heavy rain in Charlotte over the weekend has led to swollen waterways in York County, dumping a large amount of debris in Lake Wylie.
Boaters have been warned to stay off the lake as large amounts of debris, swept from shorelines by high waters, float downstream from the South Fork River.
Excess water on the Catawba River also prompted Rock Hill officials to close River Park on Monday after trails, picnic areas and a kayak launch point were flooded overnight.
Not far from the flooded park, the Rock Hill Rescue Squad pulled five people from the Catawba River late Sunday night after a water release to control flooding on Lake Wylie caused the river’s waters to rise.
Five 18-year-olds who were camping on an island in the river just north of the Interstate 77 bridge were rescued, said Rock Hill Fire Department Battalion Chief Rusty Myers.
They were on the island just after 11 p.m. when they noticed water rising around them and called home for help, he said. Their families called 911 and emergency officials – including rescue squad members and fire personnel – rushed to the scene.
The river rescue is just another reminder that higher-than-normal water levels can be dangerous, Myers said, causing the Catawba and other river systems to move more swiftly than usual.