WALNUT CREEK (KCBS) – Contra Costa County’s public works department is reminding residents that area creeks and canals are not for recreational use. That message comes in the wake of the tragic deaths of two Walnut Creek high school students in a flood control channel.

KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:

The two teenagers were in an inflatable raft when they recently attempted to navigate a rain-swollen flood control channel in Walnut Creek.

The channels can have a deceptive appearance, because they can be filled with as little as 2 ft. of water.

“That two ft. of water, however, is very powerful. And it’ll push you downstream eventually, until you reach a 20 ft. waterfall,” warned public works director Mitch Avalon.

The fences and signs along the channels, Avalon lamented, are not always enough to deter people from entering.

“The flood control channels are not recreational facilities, they were created for flood protection. We must stay out of them. Stay out and stay alive.”

County supervisors were scheduled to hear a public works presentation in the near future on a safety campaign to discourage people from entering the flood control channels in Contra Costa County.

“High school students will be a key audience in our program and we want to develop a message that will resonate with them,” explained Avalon.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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