Local first responders were dispatched to two separate emergency calls from the waters of Lake Gaston on Memorial Day evening between 5-6 p.m. The first incident, west of Eaton Ferry Bridge on the main lake, sent one male patient to the hospital with multiple injuries via a Vidant Health EastCare helicopter.
The second Roanoke-Wildwood Volunteer Fire Department call, in Northampton County, involved an elderly man experiencing a health emergency on a boat that was headed to shore near the Sandy Trace neighborhood. That patient was transported to Vidant North Hospital in Roanoke Rapids via Northampton County EMS.
Roanoke-Wildwood, Longbridge Volunteer Fire Department and Warren County Rescue responded to the call on the main lake around 5:15 p.m. that came in from the waters off E. Maple Pointe Drive. Emergency communication indicated multiple times that "skiers" were involved in the incident.
“From my understanding and I’m not 100 percent sure on this, but there was a collision between two watercraft," said Roanoke-Wildwood Chief Lorenzo Wilkins. "I don’t know if it was a boat and jet ski; two boats; but I was told that it was a two-watercraft accident. (N.C.) Wildlife as well as state highway patrol were on scene and they were heading up the investigation.”
Wilkins said only one of the people involved in the collision was sent to the hospital. They were transported by private boat across the lake to The Pointe, where first responders were waiting. Roanoke-Wildwood and Longbridge had each dispatched both truck units and rescue boats.
Warren County Rescue then transported the patient to a landing zone at Roanoke-Wildwood VFD, awaiting the EastCare chopper.
Roanoke-Wildwood was en route, via truck and rescue boat, to E. Maple Pointe Drive near the main lake before some of its units were diverted to the Northampton County call.
An emergency incident involving an ATV Monday in Gaston, Northampton County did not involve Roanoke-Wildwood.
Roanoke-Wildwood received eight calls from Friday to Monday on the holiday weekend including Sunday's fire at The Meat Up Spot.
“I warned the guys coming into the holiday with restrictions being eased in the state," Wilkins said, "I knew that we were going to have an influx of people here this weekend and usually when it’s a lot of people, accidents happen.”