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Posted April 4, 2014 EST

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MO Rescuers Need A Rescue
United States (Missouri) - Three Johnson County firefighters attempting a rescue had to escape flood water Thursday. The rescuers' jet skis became clogged with debris, lost power and capsized while they sought to rescue a woman stranded in high water in the 500 block of Highway F.

Fire Chief Larry Jennings said the water rescue unit received a call at 4:23 a.m. about a woman sitting on top of her car. Three firefighters on two jet skis tried to retrieve the woman, he said.

When the first jet ski capsized, the second turned to help and also capsized. Water carried the three men and jet skis downstream, Jennings said.

One firefighter got out of the water and radioed for help. The firefighter then helped another firefighter out of the water. A third firefighter, reported missing, turned up on the opposite side of the creek, Jennings said.

"(They) were trying to secure themselves to keep from floating away," he said.

One firefighter received treatment at the scene and the other two went to Western Missouri Medical Center, Jennings said. The hospital released one after treatment but kept the other to evaluate a possible back injury.

Jennings said other rescuers, after flood water receded, waded into the water and brought the motorist to dry ground at 6:32 a.m.

An air search found the jet skis off County Road 475, Jennings said, and firefighters went to retrieve them.

Rescuers also responded to reports of stranded motorists at Route DD and Southeast 341st Road at 5:56 a.m.; the 300th block of East Division Road at 6:09 a.m.; and Northeast 151st Road at 6:53 a.m.

Jennings said Sheriff's Office personnel rescued occupants of a house surrounded by water on Northeast 175th Road.

Written by Sue Sterling


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