ST. CHARLES – Two kayakers went over the St. Charles dam in the rain-swollen Fox River the evening of July 14, according to a St. Charles Fire Department news release.
At about 7:32 p.m., the department was dispatched to the Main Street bridge, arriving a minute later to discover that two people had gone over the dam in kayaks and were in distress, according to the release. It stated one person had struck a rock and was injured, but he was able to get to shore behind the BMO Harris Bank at Walnut and Riverside avenues.
The other person had been carried by the current to the bridge at Illinois and Riverside avenues, according to the release, which stated that one kayaker was taken to Northwestern Medicine Delnor Hospital, and the other signed a release.
The subjects reportedly had entered the river in the area of Pottawatomie Park, and several bystanders along the riverbank told a nearby police officer that the kayakers were having difficulty, according to the release.
As a result, fire department personnel including the dive team were dispatched, the release stated, adding that neither kayaker was wearing a helmet, personal flotation device or safety equipment.
The St. Charles Fire Department was assisted by the Geneva and South Elgin fire departments, the release stated.
The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has restricted the Fox River to boating between the Chain O'Lakes to the north and the dam in Montgomery to the south because of the significant danger posed by the current and high water level, the release stated.