2 kayakers rescued from swollen Neuse River in Raleigh

RALEIGH, North Carolina (WTVD) -- Two kayakers were rescued Tuesday afternoon on the swollen Neuse River.

It happened near Highway 64 and Poole Road in Raleigh.

Chief David Cates of Eastern Wake Fire Rescue said they got a call at 5:19 p.m. Paramedics in an ambulance driving by over the Neuse River on I-495 actually spotted the women in the water and called it in.

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One of them had lost her paddles and her friend had tried to help. At one point, both boats were flipped over and both kayakers were floating down the river.


Chopper 11 HD flew over the scene and the images actually helped guide rescuers to the kayakers, and not a moment too soon.

"Water temperature is about 50, 60 degrees, we were about hypothermia," said Captain William Boggs with Eastern Wake Fire Rescue.

They were able to reach the women in about 10 minutes. One of them was not wearing a life jacket.

"Today, the lady was very lucky she held onto the kayak until we got there," said Captain Boggs.

The Neuse River was very swollen because of the recent rains and the release of water from Falls Lake.

Chief Cates said the higher water is very attractive to people and they want to be on the river, but what people don't consider is the current, or what may be underneath.

"What a lot of people don't know is there are a lot of large rocks under the water," said Captain Boggs. "There are also a lot of trees that are normally above the water. That combination, with the strong current, can turn a peaceful ride down the river into trouble."

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