Kayakers cling to tree in Cuyahoga River until help arrives

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Rescue crews work to bring two kayakers to safety. (Photo Credit: Kent Police Department)

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KENT, Ohio -- A kayak trip for two men turned into a terrifying ordeal Saturday afternoon on the Cuyahoga River.

It happened around 3 p.m., near the Stow Street Bridge.

According to the Kent Police Department and Portage County Water Rescue Team (PCWRT), the two men were heading down the river when they hit some rapids, overturning their kayaks.

One man told the PCWRT that he was almost pinned under water by a submerged tree. Both men clung to a tree in the river until help arrived.

"This water is going so fast right now it can put around 150 pounds of pressure on your legs if you were standing up in the water," said Kent Fire Department Captain David Moore.

Additionally, the department said the high river levels make for very dangerous rapids and people should stay off the river until it recedes to a safer level.

"These are the types of rescues that team commanders and officers we lose some sleep over," said Moore."It's a very dangerous rescue for us for our rescuers to go into that environment."

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