CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The U.S. National Whitewater Center will begin resuming all rafting and whitewater activities after an inspection and permit were approved Tuesday.
The Mecklenburg County Public Information Department released a statement Tuesday saying they had completed the inspection of the USNWC and issued an Operation Permit allowing the facility to reopen its recreational rafting channels.
The permit was issued after the channels were drained, cleaned and refilled. The County staff from Environmental Health said they monitored and tested the water on a regular basis to ensure chlorine levels remained stable.
“We’re looking at the equipment they install, we're making sure it's functional,” says Lisa Corbitt, environmental program manager for Mecklenburg County.
Health officials say they're also monitoring chlorine levels to meet 0.5 parts per million, which is about half the amount in a swimming pool.
“The Whitewater Center has to take measurements twice a day every day for their free chlorine, PH, and temperature,” says Corbitt.
“I feel better now because it's probably the safest now that it's ever been,” says a visitor.
The center previously shut down whitewater activities after an Ohio teen died from contracting a brain-eating amoeba while rafting with her church's ministry group in June 2016.
However, health officials could not promise the deadly ameba will be completely eliminated.
Mecklenburg County Commissioner Bill James said following the incident that the Naegleria fowleri amoeba was found at the Whitewater Center and the facility would be closed by county officials until the source and solution were identified.
According to the National Whitewater Center's Communications & Brand Manager Eric Osterhus, the whitewater center would begin activities at 11 a.m. Tuesday.