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Dramatic photos and video have emerged of a New Mexico driver being rescued from the roof of his partially submerged vehicle after getting swept away by floodwaters.
The incident happened early Saturday following an attempted crossing of the Felix River between the towns of Dexter and Hagerman, outside of Roswell, according to Dexter Fire & Rescue Fire Chief Justin Powell.
Powell said in a Facebook post that the driver, whose vehicle was “still floating down stream,” was “quickly overtaken by the fast-moving water.”
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“First responders had initially checked [a] crossing finding no one and no vehicle, and immediately spread out to all other crossings to try and locate the victim,” Powell wrote. “Once the vehicle and driver were located approximately 1/4-1/2 mile downstream, Dexter Fire and Police quickly assessed the driver for any injuries and other victims.”
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Video of the rescue shows a first responder attached to a rope helping a man get a harness onto his body.
Photos later show the man in waist-deep water making his way out of the area, before finally reaching the shore.
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“This was a huge collaboration of multiple agencies and thankfully no one was injured during this rescue,” Powell said. “The victim was checked by EMS but refused any transport or treatments.”
“This morning’s incident should be a huge reality check to anyone who tries to cross any low water crossing when it’s running. It does not take much water flow to push you off roads and carry you away,” Powell added. “This incident could have been much worse and we thank God it wasn’t. No one wants to have to turn a rescue into a recovery.”