MOUNTAIN ISLAND – Water levels are falling on Mountain Island Lake and, while there's another chance for storms on June 12, conditions are expected to dry out in the following days to provide a better opportunity to access the damages caused by recent heavy rainfall.
As weekend rains pounded the foothills – reports indicate the Hickory area received nearly a foot of rain in not much more than 24 hours – the Catawba River swelled. Lake Norman, the largest lake on the Catawba-fed chain, filled beyond "full pond" and the much smaller lakes to the south, starting with Mountain Island, absorbed the flood waters.
Multiple homeowners along the Mountain Island shoreline shared stories of a quick rise in the water level during the day on Sunday. During the morning hours, the lake level was normal. But by mid afternoon the rising water had dislodged docks and piers, surrounded houses and, in some cases, flowed into many lakefront homes.
Roads were covered, emergency crews reported conducting evacuation rescues for 40 individuals isolated by the flood waters and initial reports indicated there was significant damage to at least 100 homes.
Twelve individuals, along with their pets, took refuge in an emergency Red Cross shelter established in the gymnasium at Hopewell High School in western Huntersville.
According to Duke Energy, The Mountain Island lake level crested at 106.9 feet – about seven feet above capacity – late Sunday night. By mid-morning Monday, water levels were receding with Lake Wylie cited as the next location for potential problems.