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Firefighters rescue driver from canal

March 10, 2014
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Firefighters rescue driver from atop his submerged vehicle

An driver was rescued from the top of his submerged vehicle Sunday night after the vehicle he was operating left the roadway and sank in a Cape Coral canal.

Firefighters from Engine 2 and Rescue 2 under the Command of Battalion Chief Jim Parker responded to Southeast 10 Avenue and Southeast 14 Terrace in answer to a 911 just before 11:15 p.m. The caller reported a vehicle crash into the canal and a man calling for help, officials with the Cape Coral Fire Department said in a prepared statement released Monday.

Article Photos

Water rescue.


Cape Coral Police Officer Christian Luna was the first to arrive and found a man sitting on the roof of the vehicle, which was completely submerged. When Engine 2 and Rescue 2 arrived, firefighter / rescue swimmer Jacob Kingery immediately entered the water and swam out to the driver. He was assisted to the seawall and helped up a ladder placed by firefighters. The man said he wasn't hurt but was checked over by paramedics as a precaution, officials said.

Lt. Ryan Corlew, a dive technician, then entered the water to conduct a thorough search of the vehicle and surrounding area to assure nobody else was in or around the vehicle. That search confirmed nobody else was in the canal. During the dive, Lt. Corlew was in constant communication with Engineer Matthew Sudol and Chief Parker through a specialized diver's radio communication system and was attached to a safety line so in the unlikely event of a problem arising his location is immediately known and communication can be maintained.

Cape Coral police confirm that the driver was taken into custody on suspicion of Driving Under the Influence, officials said. His name was not immediately released.

Fact Box

The Cape Coral Fire Department offers the following safety tips:

Most cars that enter the water normally float for a minute or two. If your car goes into the water:

  • * Unhook the seat-belt and unlock the door
  • * Lower the window, remembering that most electric windows should work while the car is still floating.
  • * Don't use your energy trying to open the doors, because water pressure will keep them from budging.

If the car windows will NOT open, this is where a person really needs to stay calm because, to get out, passengers need to wait for the inside of the car to fill up with water. Usually when the water reaches just about neck level it will be possible to open the door. When the water pressure is equalized on the inside and outside of the car the doors should open fairly easy and passengers can get out of the car and swim to the surface.

Source: Cape Coral Fire Department

The investigation continues by the Cape Coral Police Department.

The vehicle was recovered by a local tow service and no other injuries were reported.

Source: Cape Coral Fire Department



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