Rapid Creek warning issued by fire department

Several areas of the Rapid City bike path are closed due to Rapid Creek rising and increased flow. (KOTA TV)

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) - Rapid Creek is flowing at a pretty good clip by noon Tuesday, 450 cubic feet per second at Founders Park, according to the Rapid City Fire Department.

In a release, the RCFD states that the creek is running bank-full in most areas, prompting a warning to be careful around the creek. “Six inches of moving water is enough to sweep a person off of their feet while only one foot of moving water will float many vehicles,” the release stated.

Most areas of Rapid Creek are at least 4 feet deep and running more than 300 cubic feet per second. In Rapid Creek, much of the danger is related to trees, debris and unseen hazards located under the water.

If you are near fast-moving water:

• Know your limitations. If you do not have experience in the swift-water environment, it is best to stay away.

• If swept away in high flow water, DO NOT put your feet down. Foot entrapment's are a real possibility. Keep your feet up and point them downstream in the direction of the nearest shoreline or in the direction of safety and attempt to self-rescue. Always go over obstacles. Do not try to go under them.

• Use flotation. A life jacket may save your life.

• Watch out for children, water is a natural attractant. Keep them very close to you when near flooded or high-water areas. Teach them about the dangers of moving water and remind them to stay away.

• Don’t drive through flooded roadways. Turn around, don’t drown. Each year, more deaths occur due to flooding than from any other thunderstorm related hazard. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that over half of all flood-related drownings occur when a vehicle is driven into hazardous flood water.