Fort Branch Fire Chief Mike Sokeland says his crew successfully performed a water rescue, pulling one man out of a stuck vehicle east of Fort Branch. The man is fine, but his car will stay on the county road as the water was too high to pull it out.
Heavy rain is slowing down traffic on many roads around the Tri-State and in some cases bringing cars to a complete stop on flooded county roads. "It has really raised up higher than I've seen it in a long time." Mike Sokeland is the Fire Chief in Fort Branch and he's had a busy day, fighting water instead of fire. "East of Fort Brach here out on a county road somebody was trapped in their vehicle out in deep water." He called his crew together for a water rescue. "We thought we would get a hold of the vehicle and pull it out but the water was too deep." Luckily a local farmer was able to drive his tractor into the water allowing two firemen to pull the driver out. "We left the vehicle sitting because the water was already halfway up the doorways." Chief Sokeland says the stranded driver isn't the only person surprised by the high water. "No I didn't know it was going to be this much but it's a bunch."
In fort branch Bob Sensmeier has a moat filling up his front yard. "Ain't much I can do about it." Because the house sits below the road he says it's not uncommon to see water collecting in front of his house. "Yeah but not quite this much. This is kind of rare to come up this high."
The Gibson County Sheriff's Office says the best way to keep people safe is by warning them. "try to get flood warning signs out there, high water signs, or if we need to close the road completely." In conditions like this Deputy Ballard recommends people drive slowly, especially at night. "A lot of people will drive faster than they can see out in front of them and come up on water too quick and that's when they get into trouble."
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