Local News

Dangerous Waters Tempt Thrill-Seekers

Posted April 29, 1997 12:00 a.m. EDT

— All it takes is a couple of inches of rain to raise waters in the Haw and Eno Rivers to dangerously high levels, and that's all it takes to draw thrill-seekers into harm's way.

Kayakers flock to the flood-swollen rivers rivers in search of a big ride. They say an experienced kayaker can handle the water with no problem, but rescue workers say it's a dangerous practice that costs taxpayers a great deal of money when search and rescue operations get underway. It can also cost families a lot more when those operations are unsuccessful.

A kayaker on the Eno had to be pulled to safety by a helicopter Tuesday when raging waters got the best of him. In Durham County, rescue workers pulled a swimmer out of the water only to watch in frustration as he later went back in.

Rescue workers say they understand the temptation, but that the risks are too great. The biggest threat to those who dare to enter are trees in the water.