- Wayne Baker Staff Writer
Hamilton resident Rebecca Lee called 911 when heavy rains swept up her green Honda Odyssey on Wednesday night between Tabor and Cleveland avenues.
“I got to get out of my car or I am going to drown soon,” Lee says to dispatchers. “I am going to have to get out or die. There is water up to my waist and it is getting worse and worse.”
A water rescue team was able to get Lee safely out of her vehicle.
“Luckily, in this situation rescuers recognized immediately that the caller and her vehicle were not in danger of being fully submerged or swept away,” said Sgt. Brian Robinson of the Hamilton Police Department. “They were able to safely remove her once they assessed the water at the intersection was beginning to recede.”
And luckily, the only injury to Lee was her bruised ego.
“My late father, Ronald Lee, was a retired Hamilton firefighter,” she told the Journal-News today. “He would not have appreciated me having to be rescued.”
Lee said she had never seen the water pool between Tabor and Cleveland avenues like it did last night.
“I had run through a little bit of water coming down Cleveland Avenue and I had turned on Tabor and went about 20 feet. The first 10 feet I was just in a little bit of water then it was just like a river. It was weird,” Lee told the Journal-News. “I live in this area and have never seen the water pool there in the seven years I have lived there.”
Sgt. Brian Robinson of the Hamilton Police Department said the best advice for drivers in flood conditions is to heed the safety slogan of the National Weather Service — “Turn Around Don’t Drown.”
“It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away a small car, while 2 feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles,” he said.