Off-duty FF-EMT assists in submerged vehicle rescue

The South Carolina firefighter-EMT and other good Samaritans helped free one person; a second person was revived after 20 minutes submerged

By Laura French

COLLETON COUNTY, S.C. — A South Carolina off-duty firefighter-EMT stopped to help after a vehicle flipped over and became submerged in a ditch filled with water. 

The vehicle carrying two people left the road and flipped over several times before coming to a rest on its roof in the ditch, according to Walterboro Live. The ditch was filled without about three feet of water, witnesses said. 

The Jasper County Fire-Rescue firefighter-EMT, whose name was not reported, as well as a truck driver and a traveler from North Carolina went into the water and managed to free one of the trapped occupants by forcing open a rear passenger door. However, they were unable to free the second occupant who was submerged for more than 20 minutes before fire-rescue crews arrived. 

First responders used rescue tools to free the man, began life-saving measures and transported him to the hospital. Officials say the man went into cardiac arrest and had multiple injuries, but was revived at the hospital by emergency department staff. 

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