Richmond County boat ramps closed because of rising waters - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Richmond County boat ramps closed because of rising waters

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The Savannah River keeps rising, but that's not stopping some people from testing out the waters.

"On the river, the current is quite strong, saw a lot of debris," said boater Nick Mellinger.

He drove his vessel all the way up from the Atlantic Ocean, only to find all the boat ramps in the CSRA completely underwater.

"Well, it's certainly an exciting experience," he laughed. "A learning experience. Although, I wouldn't recommend it."

Lock and Dam Park and the Augusta Riverwalk are now entirely closed as well; the floodwaters are just too dangerous to allow anyone near them.

The Army Corps of Engineers also pushed ahead with a plan Thursday to test the spillway of Thurmond Dam, drawing hundreds of watchers right to the water's edge.

"it's like the Niagara Falls of the south, all the water coming out," explained swimmer Martin Dowden.

He is one person not minding the flooding and is still swimming in Clark's Hill Lake.

"It was pretty shallow, maybe like a foot deep," Dowden explained. "But now it's five or six feet, a little hard to stand in.

While Dowden is enjoying the rain, others are hoping to dry out, and soon.

Original Story:

The Corp of Engineers has notified the City of Augusta that they will be increasing the release from Thurmond Dam to 40,000 cubic feet per second. This will cause the river to rise and the creeks in Richmond County to be impacted.

The boat ramps and boating access points in Richmond County have been closed until further notice due to rising water and safety concerns.

All walking paths on the Riverwalk remained closed until further notice. Wrightsboro Road before Flowing Wells Road is still closed this morning. Detours include Flowing Wells Rd and Belair Road. Marina Road remains closed. Lock and Dam Park and access to the Baurle Boat Ramp below Augusta Regional Airport is closed.

The National Weather Service has issued a Flood Warning for Richmond County, Butler Creek from 7/11 at 2:00 PM to 7/14 at 8:00 PM. Minor flooding is expected.

Never drive vehicles through standing water and do not let children play in flood waters.

Citizens should take the necessary steps to have an evacuation plan for themselves and their family if the need to evacuate quickly. Have a box of important documents, such as birth certificates, insurance cards, social security cards, emergency contact information and medications, ready to take with you.

More information will be provided as it becomes available. If you are in an area that is flooding, please report that information to 911 Dispatch at (706)821-1080.

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