ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA)– Firefighters had to break the back window of a car to save a woman whose vehicle was swept away during a flash flood on a residential St. Petersburg street on Wednesday morning.
The dramatic rescue proved how quickly flood waters can rise and how dangerous they can be.
At about 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday, St. Petersburg Fire & Rescue firefighters responded to a call about a vehicle in the water at the 600 block of Roser Park Drive.
When firefighters arrived, they found a female trapped in the water inside her vehicle.
A SPFR spokesperson said there was a flash flood in the area, which caused the water to rise 4 to 5 feet above a canal in the area. The driver of the vehicle was unaware of the danger and got caught in the swift water.
The vehicle became inverted and quickly filled up with water. Fire crews had to act fast with the water still rising in the area.
Firefighters anchored themselves with ropes, in order to safely enter the fast moving current. The female occupant climbed into the back seat because of the rising water. Fire crews had to break the rear window of the vehicle in order to rescue her from the car.
The female driver was taken to Bayfront Health Center in St. Petersburg where she’s being treated for minor cuts and abrasions.
St. Petersburg Fire & Rescue Deputy Fire Marshal Lt. Steve Lawrence said that the canal is parallel to the street, which is located in a low-lying area of St. Petersburg. He said flash flooding has occurred in the area before.
Lawrence said that there was constant heavy rain in the area on Wednesday morning.
“Usually, the canal can handle it,” he said.
PICTURE GALLERY: http://interactives.wsav.com/photomojo/gallery/preview/38832/1