Refilling process beings at Whitewater Center, no word on when channels will reopen

- The U.S. National Whitewater Center says it will take two to four days to completely fill it’s rafting channels after the center had to drain the water, which tested positive for a brain-eating amoeba.

Mecklenburg County public health workers were at the center Friday monitoring the refilling of the man-made kayak and raft channels.

USNWC officials say it will take roughly 12 million gallons of water to completely fill the whitewater rivers. The water is coming primarily from Charlotte Water, county officials say.

The facility voluntarily shut down several weeks ago after an Ohio teen died from an amoeba after visiting the Whitewater Center in June.

Since then, local and state health and environmental agencies, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),  have been working with the USNWC to drain the existing water, clean the channels and advise the center on the development of a new system to filter the water and clean the concrete.  

The water was drained into the Catawba River after being heavily chlorinated and dechlorinated. Sediment at the bottom of the channels, which health officials say is where the amoeba was mainly located, was scattered across an area above the center. The process would make it impossible for the amoeba to survive, according to health officials.

“We remain engaged with the whitewater center and will continue monitoring the situation to ensure that no imminent public health risk exists,” Dr. Plescia said Friday.

USNWC and health officials did not say when the channels are expected to reopen to the public.

Related: NC officials approve plan to release water at U.S. National Whitewater Center into Catawba River

Related: Treatment and discharge palns resume for water at U.S. National Whitewater Center

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