Safety advice following water incident in Pershore
On Saturday 5 December, a water first responder team from Pershore and boat crews from both Evesham and Worcester Fire Station attended a water incident at Walcot Lane Ford, Pershore.
The incident involved a car that had driven in to the flooded approach road to the Ford and had passed two depth indicators and a Ford warning sign before being swept away by the flowing water.
One male managed to escape from the vehicle onto the adjacent bank before the vehicle was totally submerged, which was within seconds of entering the water. After escaping the vehicle, the gentleman left the scene to seek assistance. The witness who reported the incident could not confirm if the vehicle had any other occupants trapped inside. This led to a very dynamic search and rescue phase of the incident, with a crew deployed to search the river bank to locate the vehicle. The vehicle was discovered two feet below the surface of the muddy water.
Ambulance & police personnel who were at the scene assisted with the search as well as the air ambulance that arrived swiftly.
A water response crew from Evesham rapidly joined the search and a boat was deployed into the water. As attempts were being made to access the vehicle it was communicated that the gentleman from the car had been found and it was confirmed that he was the sole occupant.
An assessment was then made of the vehicles location and stability to prevent it from becoming a moving hazard downstream and the gentleman was taken to hospital for precautionary checks.
Station Commander Adrian Thompson who attended the incident said: "The gentleman in the car had a very lucky escape. Had there been anybody else in the vehicle then this could easily have been a very tragic incident."
He continued with safety advice for drivers in the current conditions. "This provides a timely reminder for all drivers to pay particular attention to any depth indicators provided at specific known risk sites. It is crucial to not drive through flood water where the depth is unknown or the vehicle has not got the wading capacity to deal with traversing through the water they are faced with."
He finally added: "It is important at this time of the year to always comply with road closure and warning signs and, if in any doubt, it is better to find an alternative route to avoid the potential risk. This may cause inconvenience and additional travel distance, but could save the need to be assisted or rescued from a marooned vehicle or potentially more serious and tragic consequences if caught up in flowing flood water."