Sparks, NV - Paul and Anita O'Neill come out to Rock Park in Sparks just about every day in the summer to enjoy the Truckee River. But on Wednesday, they refused to get in.
"I'm in fear of my life to go into the water today because it looks so dirty," said Paul.
The couple from Sparks said they've never seen the water this brown.
"It's just horrible-looking," said Anita. "It doesn't look safe."
"It's brown and dirty!" said Jaiden Stewart, an 11-year-old who wasn't afraid to get into the river. She and her friend, Margaret, were not worried.
"Just because the dirt's not going to hurt us," said Margaret Brown, an 11-year-old from Cold Springs. "It's just the water."
According to the Truckee Meadows Water Authority, the water was safe to swim in. Paul Miller, Manager of Operations and Water Quality at Truckee Meadows Water Authority, the water was brown because of thunderstorm activity Tuesday night in the Gray and Bronco Creek drainages. He said that muddy water got into the Truckee River. He said he wouldn't recommend swallowing the water, but that people should never drink untreated river water anyway.
Some folks, though, weren't shocked when they saw the water. Like Frances Brown, who grew up in North Carolina.
"When it rains there, all the rivers get muddy," said Frances. "So it's pretty common and that was our first thought: 'Oh, it must have rained up in the mountains.'"
TMWA said the water should start to look a lot better by the end of Wednesday night.