Excessive rainfall posing dangerous water levels ahead of Memorial holiday

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Friday, May 25, 2018
News 12 @ 6 O'clock / NBC 26 at 7

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- This boat ramp by the Lock and Dam is just one example of how much rain the Savannah River is getting.

"Unfortunately our river has been on the rise now for a couple of weeks"
Savannah Riverkeeper Tonya Bonatatibus says as the river continues to take on more water it gets stronger.

"The water is super swift, this is a big moving river and especially when she starts getting swollen and topping those banks it's taking a lot of stuff with IT it's really easy to get pulled under."

Not only can swimming be dangerous boat ramps can be dangerous too.

"A lot of the boat ramps are going under pretty quickly, clearly this is not a safe boat ramp to use and it's being closed right now.”

A large amount of rain also pushes animals out of their homes.

"With the swift water the fact is a lot of these animals that live along the waterways, their homes are flooded.”

Last week this alligator was on the Bobby Jones Expressway.

"Seeing alligators in places you wouldn't expect them, like the canal last week I think that has to do a lot with why the people saw the canal or the Bobby Jones Gator."

Georgia DNR was able to help catch the gator last week this weekend their main concern is patrolling the water.

"Typically we stop a vessel for some reason it could be someone's over the bow, it could be the vessel looks overloaded," said Eddie Henderson, Colonel for DNR Law Enforcement Division.

Right now DNR is short 43 Game Wardens which means if something happens on land this weekend it will take them longer to get there.

But if you're in need, on the water, you can turn to them.

“You can check the City of Augusta's website for more information on which boat ramps are closed and which ones are open this weekend.”