Whitewater operations closed, patrons fine with that - | WBTV Charlotte

Whitewater operations closed, patrons fine with that

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

Saturday was supposed to be the first day of 2017 the whitewater operations at the U.S. National Whitewater Center were supposed to be open, but that was not the case after the center did not get the mandatory operation permit from Mecklenburg County.

The center submitted the application last week, and the county is still in the process of inspecting.

Families at the Whitewater Center said they are fine with the extra precautions the county is taking.

"It's good they're being more careful. If there's a threat out here, you don't want to take any chances," said Richard Halliburton, who went biking on the trails at the center.

Over the summer, the whitewater channels were temporarily closed after 18-year-old Lauren Seitz died from a brain-eating amoeba in June after visiting the Whitewater Center.

This is the first time an operation permit from the county has been required for the center.

Families said they don't believe a repeat of the brain-eating amoeba-caused death will happen, but think the new inspection process will make things even safer.

"Certainly want to make sure it's right before it's open, and just give everybody a better peace of mind," said Scott Avey.

The Whitewater Center released the following statement:

“The U.S. National Whitewater Center is working closely with Mecklenburg County officials through the newly established permitting and inspection process. We have filed all the necessary paperwork with Mecklenburg County, and at this time, are awaiting their next steps as they work diligently through this new process. Whitewater activities will resume as soon as we have officially received the permit.”

Mecklenburg County officials have not set a time frame for when the whitewater operations will be cleared and open again.

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