1. #1
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    Aug 2001
    25 NW of the GW

    Post CA Swift-water Rescue

    Mother, baby rescued from raging California storm water
    With BC-CA--California Storm, BC-CA--California Storm-La Conchita
    AP Photos LA106 and CAONT102
    SAN DIMAS, Calif. (AP) - The story of a mother and her infant
    son plucked from raging flood waters after their inflatable rescue
    raft capsized took a bizarre twist Tuesday, with a firefighter
    blaming the woman for the accident.
    Television footage showed Erica Henderson struggling to keep her
    8-week-old son's tiny head above water as the two were swept down
    the San Dimas Creek after the raft, piloted by a firefighter,
    flipped in the roiling water.
    Henderson, with her son William strapped to her chest in a baby
    carrier, washed up on a sand bar within minutes and was pulled from
    the creek by members of Los Angeles County's swift-water rescue
    Neither was seriously injured. They recovered Tuesday at Pomona
    Valley Community Hospital.
    Henderson said on "Good Morning America" early Tuesday that at
    one point she feared her son was dead and tried to resuscitate him
    as they were dragged downstream.
    "The last time we hit the embankment, the force was so bad I
    knew he swallowed water," Henderson told CBS.
    "I thought I was going to lose him at that point and I felt
    like if I pushed on his chest, it would help. And it did. I pumped
    his chest with my hand and he spit up some water."
    But Henderson canceled a news conference after a member of the
    swift-water rescue team criticized her and her husband for
    hampering the rescue. The husband's name wasn't immediately
    Larry Collins, coordinator of the swift-water rescue team, told
    KNBC-TV that the baby's father was "verbally and physically
    violent" and physically assaulted two firefighters. The couple,
    who live in a cabin in San Dimas Canyon, had called 911 and were
    waiting on the river bank when firefighters arrived.
    "We had uncooperative parents that we've had to deal with
    before," Collins told the station. "The children needed to be
    taken out of there."
    Collins said Henderson eventually agreed to leave the cabin, but
    only if she could hold her baby herself. But he said Henderson
    caused the raft to flip because she was "was uncooperative to
    start with ... and she wasn't following instructions."
    Henderson's husband - who was supposed to take a second raft -
    decided to remain at the cabin with the couple's 2-year-old
    daughter after seeing what had happened to his wife, according to
    television reports.
    Capt. Mark Savage, spokesman for the Fire Department, said that
    Collins should not have made the comments about Henderson and her
    "Yes, they might have been (uncooperative) but we don't need to
    be going public with that aspect," Savage said. "We're not going
    down that road any further."
    Collins did not immediately return messages from The Associated
    Press on Tuesday.

    (Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  2. #2
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    Feb 2003
    Fairfield, CA


    I heard on the radio today that a woman from Palmdale, CA was being rescued from the roof of her car by a chopper. She was holding her baby during the rescue but couldn't hold on to the baby. The baby did not survive.

    The crazy part of the story was that she drove around a police barrier that would have prevented her from being in that predicament in the first place. I believe I heard the criminal charges were pending.

    NJFFSA16, Maybe you can verify this story. I heard it on KGO Radio (San Francisco)

  3. #3
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    25 NW of the GW

    Post Sadly...yes, it did happen.

    Associated Press Writers
    LOS ANGELES (AP) - A 2-year-old girl drowned after slipping from
    her mother's grip and falling into the raging floodwaters. A
    passer-by pulled a 5-year-old stuck in neck-high mud to safety. A
    man was swept 2 miles down a swollen, icy river before being
    Emergency crews and good Samaritans have attempted dozens of
    dramatic rescues in the series of storms that have drenched
    California in the past week and killed at least 12 people. Many
    rescues have had happy endings. But in some cases, the violence of
    the storms proved too much to overcome.
    That was the case outside Los Angeles on Sunday, when the little
    girl fell victim to the floodwaters.
    Rescue workers found the girl, her two siblings and their mother
    stranded on top of their car, floating down a fast-moving wash in
    The rescue team was using a helicopter to hoist the mother to
    safety when she lost her grip on her daughter, who then fell into
    the wash. The mother and other children were rescued along with an
    unidentified man; the girl's body was found downstream three hours
    later. The girl was identified Monday as Jamaia B. Davis of
    "It's a very tragic event that unfolded - for everybody," Los
    Angeles County Fire Inspector Mike McCormick said. "Rescues like
    this really hit hard and we definitely want to try to save as many
    people as we can. We don't want to lose anybody, especially a
    child. It really hurts."
    The mother, who was not immediately identified, had driven
    around barricades to try to reach a flooded-out road, sheriff's Lt.
    Don Ford said. Authorities were weighing whether to bring charges
    against her in the toddler's death.
    In the San Dimas Canyon area, another daring rescue of a baby
    ended happily. A toddler who fell into raging storm waters was
    snatched up by a firefighter who carried her to safety as he
    gingerly made his way through the swift current. The baby was
    hospitalized but was expected to recover.
    The firefighter who made the rescue was in the area to help
    evacuate people staying in five cabins in San Dimas Canyon.
    In still another successful rescue, firefighters and other
    rescuers worked furiously Sunday to save a driver whose BMW plunged
    off Interstate 5 into a Southern California creek and got carried
    away by the swift current. The water was moving so fast that it
    tore the man's pants off.
    Capt. Mike Yule of the Santa Fe Springs Fire Department and
    other crews hurried to a bridge two miles downstream to drop safety
    lines. Others ran along a bike path to keep tabs on the man, the
    freezing water weakening him by the second.
    As the man drifted toward the bridge, he clutched the rope. A
    group of firefighters and bystanders pulled him up. But just a few
    feet from the top, he lost his hold and plunged backward more than
    10 feet into the icy torrent.
    He passed under the bridge. Rescue crews threw the man a life
    vest with a rope attached, and pulled him to safety. They let out
    whoops of joy after completing the rescue.
    "There are certain times in this job when you wouldn't change
    this job for anything," Yule said. "And this was one of them. It
    was an absolute feeling to be able to make a difference. It's
    The man's young daughter and her friend had been plucked from
    the creek shortly after the accident.
    In yet another rescue, a passer-by who saw a two-story home
    outside Los Angeles demolished in a mudslide Sunday pulled a
    5-year-old girl from the neck-high muck. Firefighters also rescued
    the girl's brother and 33-year-old father.
    David Kapner told KNBC-TV that he was almost buried in mud
    himself while rescuing the girl. "I just talked to the Lord, told
    him that if I died out there, if I died helping them, then hey, you
    know, it's for a good cause at least," Kapner said.
    In neighboring Nevada, the storm caused an avalanche that killed
    a 13-year-old boy who was knocked Sunday from a ski lift while
    snowboarding. Two other people were found alive shortly after the
    wave of snow hit at the ski resort about 45 miles northwest of Las
    McCormick, the Los Angeles County fire official, said the
    swift-water rescue teams are loaded with county lifeguards who
    normally oversee 98 miles of beach in the warmer months - making
    them perfect for flood rescues.
    "Those guys are professional swimmers and we got them,"
    McCormick said. "We've got every tool."

    (Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  4. #4
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    Aug 2000
    Somewhere between genius and insanity!


    Here's an idea...

    The tv networks and the cable tv channels get together for just an hour and broadcast a show about the dangers of swift water.

    It would save lives and keep us out of unnecessary peril....

    yeah, I'm dreaming again....
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

  5. #5
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    Aug 2001
    25 NW of the GW

    Post It's that darn El Nino, I tell ya

    LA CONCHITA, Calif. (AP) - Rescuers searching with shovels,
    high-tech cameras and their bare hands found the bodies of three
    children and an adult before dawn Wednesday, bringing the death
    toll from a mudslide in this seaside hamlet to 10, an official
    Ventura County Fire Captain Danny Rodriguez said the bodies were
    found as crews worked around the clock for a second straight night,
    swarming the debris pile under clear skies and powerful klieg
    Officials said about 11 people remained missing after Monday's
    30-foot mudslide, which was triggered by five days of nearly
    nonstop rain that has killed 25 people in California since Friday.
    The victims found Wednesday were believed to be the wife and
    three daughters of La Conchita resident Jimmie Wallet, who had
    released a statement thanking the searchers.
    "I'm very pleased with the hard work and all the effort in
    finding my family," Wallet said in the statement relayed to The
    Associated Press by Ventura County sheriff's chaplain Ron Matthews.
    Wallet, 37, had been searching alongside firefighters for his
    missing 36-year-old wife Michelle and their three daughters, Hanna,
    10, Raven, 6, and Paloma, 2.
    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was to tour the area Wednesday.
    The days of torrential rains also triggered fatal traffic
    accidents all across the state, knocked out power to hundreds of
    thousands, imperiled hillside homes and caused flash floods.
    In La Conchita, firefighters remained hopeful they might still
    find at least some people alive, while acknowledging that any
    survivors would have to be found quickly.
    "The rescuers are continuing to find some voids between the
    collapsed structures," Ventura County Fire Chief Bob Roper said
    Wednesday on NBC's "Today" show.
    Ten people were injured in the slide, which came down like a
    curving, rolling waterfall onto the tiny town between Highway 101
    and a coastal bluff in Ventura County.
    Fifteen homes were destroyed and 16 were damaged. Roper said the
    slide rolled homes over and intermixed debris, hindering efforts to
    identify the rubble of specific houses.
    Early Wednesday, chain saws buzzed as bulldozers and backhoes
    crunched through sections of the debris pile that were being
    cleared from the town, having failed to yield any bodies or
    survivors after more than a day of probing. Diesel exhaust from
    their equipment hung heavily in the air.
    Residents and families also picked through the muddy rubble. One
    resident pulled out a torn curtain, others dug up a broken clothes
    hanger, a stack of recipes and a backpack. Nearby, an enormous
    passenger bus lay on its side, a white sedan crushed underneath.
    The painstaking search through layer upon layer of muck was made
    more difficult by the jumble of stiff pieces of homes that had
    mixed with the mud, including baseboards, doors and frames.
    Rescuers tried to carefully scoop out parts of the pile to make
    sure they checked sections of trapped air where a survivor might be
    able to breathe.
    The searchers were using dogs trained to search for live victims
    and others that can locate cadavers. If rescuers believed they had
    located an air pocket, both types of dogs would be called over to
    determine if anyone was nearby, said Capt. Bill Monahan, head of
    the Los Angeles County Fire Department canine unit.
    Monahan said he had been up for four days straight working on
    rescue efforts elsewhere during Southern California's record
    downpours, before he was called to La Conchita.
    "It's been four days of death and destruction," he said.
    Rescuers were given a break Tuesday when the rains finally
    stopped. National Weather Service forecaster Stuart Seto said clear
    skies were expected to remain through at least the weekend.
    Still, the damage was felt far from California.
    Muddy rivers roared through towns along the Nevada-Arizona-Utah
    lines on Tuesday, flooding homes in the Nevada resort town of
    Mesquite and forcing the evacuation of about 100 people in nearby
    Seven of Arizona's 15 counties have declared states of emergency
    to qualify for cleanup funding and aid, with the hardest hit in the
    northwestern tip of the state and central regions.
    Officials were testing wells in the Beaver Dam area to make sure
    none were contaminated when a sewage plant that serves the
    community of 1,500 was damaged by flood waters. Some 14 houses were
    destroyed or washed away.
    National Guard helicopters were called in to airlift residents
    in two areas of southern Utah's Washington County that were
    stranded by washed-out bridges and roads. The county was declared a
    state disaster area.
    "It's a situation that one must see to believe," Gov. Jon
    Husman said. "Property has been lost, homes have been lost,
    families have been relocated.
    Associated Press Writer Greg Risling contributed to this report.
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  6. #6
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    Aug 2001
    25 NW of the GW

    Unhappy Storm Deaths

    By The Associated Press
    A look at those who died during the relentless rainstorms that
    pounded California between Jan. 7 and Tuesday.
    - Jan. 7: Four-year-old Ingrid Paredes died in Chula Vista when
    the car she was in slid off the rain-slicked Interstate 805.
    - Jan. 7: A woman died and her male partner was rescued after a
    34-foot sailboat was caught in heavy seas and went aground near the
    central coast town of Cambria. Her name has not been released.
    - Jan. 7: A 60-year-old Richmond woman died after the driver of
    a Jeep Cherokee skidded more than 50 feet on a rain-soaked roadway
    in Oakland, hitting the Buick station wagon in which the woman was
    a passenger.
    - Jan. 7: Anthony Miranda, 50, of Modesto was killed when a car
    and pickup truck collided in Modesto. Investigators said rain was
    not falling at the time, but the cloudy sky made it very dark and
    the roadway was wet.
    - Jan. 8: The body of an unidentified man was pulled out of the
    swollen Tijuana River; he is believed to have been with a group of
    illegal border crossers.
    - Jan. 8: Andrei Natali, 20, of Ojai, died after he was carried
    off by the swift-moving Matilija River in Ventura County.
    - Jan. 8: A fiery crash on the Ventura Freeway in Glendale
    killed two people. A disabled 2002 Ford Mustang was rear-ended by a
    1991 Honda that burst into flames, killing its male driver. He has
    not been identified. The driver of the Mustang, 31-year-old Anik
    Jeannine Proffit, also died.
    - Jan. 8: A collapsed hillside in Los Angeles' Elysian Park
    area, near Dodger Stadium, crushed and buried a homeless man under
    a concrete-like mound of mud and rock. He was identified as
    42-year-old Jeffrey Lynn Earwood.
    - Jan. 9: On the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, a 21-year-old
    Rancho Dominguez man was killed and four people were injured after
    their vehicle skidded on water or mud, hit a telephone pole and
    ended up in the surf. His name has not been released.
    - Jan. 9: In Los Angeles, 79-year-old Refugio Quero was run over
    by her husband who did not see her in the driving rain. Quero was
    opening a gate for her husband's car when he hit her.
    - Jan. 9: In Palmdale, on the edge of the Mojave Desert
    northeast of Los Angeles, rescue workers in a helicopter plucked a
    woman and two of her children from a car floating down a
    rain-filled wash, but the woman lost her grip on her 2-year-old
    daughter, who drowned. The child was identified as Jamaia B. Davis
    of Palmdale.
    - Jan. 10: In La Conchita, a small community of houses wedged
    onto a spit of land between the mountains and the Pacific Ocean, a
    massive mudslide Monday killed 10 people. Victims identified by the
    Ventura County Medical Examiner's office include Charles Womack,
    51, John Morgan, 56, Michael Alvis, 53, Cristina Kennedy, 45, and
    Mechelle Wallet, 37, and her daughters Hannah Jade, 10, Raven
    Violet, 6, and Paloma Julie, 2.
    - Jan. 10: In San Bernardino County, a woman drowned after she
    tried to drive her car across a swollen creek. The body of
    35-year-old Maureen Martinez has not been found.
    - Jan. 10: In the City of Industry, a van hit 53-year-old
    Valente Jacquez from behind as he exited his car after a
    rain-related accident on the Pomona Freeway.
    - Jan. 10: Daniel Joshua McCutchen, 30, died after he tried to
    swim across the raging Topanga Creek and was washed away, sheriff's
    officials said. His body was found by paramedics wedged in a tree
    in Topanga Canyon.
    - Jan. 10: Yaquelin Perez Villaneuva, 8, of Yakima, Wash., died
    after a driver slammed his pickup truck into her family's minivan
    while it was stopped for chain-control screening in Redding.
    Officials were deciding whether to charge Sidney Eugene Clary, 37,
    who was trying to retrieve his cell phone charger when he hit the
    minivan at between 55 mph and 65 mph.
    - Jan. 11: In Los Angeles, a 52-year-old man died of injuries he
    sustained in a rain-related traffic accident on Interstate 5 on
    Jan. 9.
    - Jan. 11: In San Diego, an 18-year-old woman identified as
    Lydia Arlene Mendoza was killed when the car she was riding in ran
    into a 50-foot-tall tree that fell on California 163. Three others
    were injured - two seriously.
    Sources: Coroners and sheriff's deputies in Los Angeles,
    Riverside, Ventura, San Bernardino, San Luis Obispo, Stanislaus,
    Alameda and Shasta counties.

    (Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

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  7. #7
    Forum Member
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    Nov 2002
    Maryland (DC Suburb)


    As usual, most of those were due to gross wilful and wanton stupidity.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

  8. #8
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    Oct 2002


    It's unfortunate that Ignorance is bliss. Hats off to the brothers out there, keep up the great work!

    September 11, 2001 - NEVER FORGET!


  9. #9
    Sr. Information Officer
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    Aug 2001
    25 NW of the GW


    UPLAND, Calif. (AP) - A 35-year-old woman and her 12-year-old
    son, out for a Martin Luther King Day picnic at Mount Baldy, fell
    into a fast-moving, rain-swollen creek on Monday, a day after an
    11-year-old boy fell into the same creek and drowned, authorities
    Rescuers from the Los Angeles County Fire Department frantically
    searched for the pair in San Antonio Creek until darkness when they
    suspended the effort, said supervising dispatcher Ed Pickett.
    Crews from the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department
    continued searching late into the night, said supervising
    dispatcher Tom Betty.
    Witnesses told authorities Frank Zavala of El Monte had stopped
    to wash his hands in the creek when he lost his footing and tumbled
    in. His mother, Sibilina Flores, jumped in after him and both were
    quickly swept away by the rain-swollen water that was moving as
    fast as 40 mph.
    The pair disappeared in front of the woman's husband and
    15-year-old daughter, said Carl Flores, a battalion chief with the
    Los Angeles County Fire Department.
    "They're torn up," Flores said, adding they waited for hours
    for word about the pair before leaving the area.
    On Sunday, an 11-year-old boy drowned in the same creek after he
    was swept under by currents moving up to 25 mph, authorities said.
    The currents carried the body of Marcelo Bautista into the San
    Antonio Dam.
    He and a 14-year-old boy were skipping back and forth over part
    of the half-mile creek near Mount Baldy Village when he fell. His
    father was able to grab his son but the boy slipped from his hand,
    authorities said. The man and the older boy were able to pull
    themselves out of the frigid waters.
    The creek, 45 miles northeast of Los Angeles, was swollen by the
    heavy rains that struck the region earlier this month and by runoff
    from melting mountain snow.
    The speed of the water and its chilly temperature makes the
    chance of survival for any length of time extremely difficult, said
    Los Angeles County Fire Department spokesman Edward Osorio.
    "With the combination of deep water, a rugged creek bottom and
    all types of snags with trees and trash, we'd like to be
    optimistic, and hope that someone can hold onto one of those
    snags," Osorio said. "But those same snags can hold you down and
    keep you under the water."
    Two flotation buoys thrown into the water Monday to test the
    creek's speed were never located, Osorio said.

    (Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

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  10. #10
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    Jan 2000
    Somewhere in the Backcountry...


    The bodies of Sibilina Flores and her son were both recovered today by members of the SBSO and SBCoFD.

    Marcelo Bautista is still missing. Crews from LASO ESD and SAR teams will be continuing search efforts tomorrow.

    There were people playing in the water less than 1/2 mile from where searchers were looking for Marcelo today. I wouldn't be surprised if more people don't find themselves in the same situation sometime in the next few days.

    Sibilina and her son were swept away just a few miles upstream from where the efforts to find Marcelo were underway. Even a massive and rapid response proved fruitless.

    With all of the rain/snow and 70-80 temps in the local mountains the streams are raging. Most of the drainages are continuous white water through channels filled with snags and debris. Strainers everywhere.


  11. #11
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    Aug 2001
    25 NW of the GW

    Post Rain....rain and more pain

    LOS ANGELES (AP) - The sun began poking through the clouds
    Wednesday as California emergency crews shifted into cleanup mode
    after a six-day drenching that killed at least nine people,
    destroyed dozens of houses and flooded roads and airports.
    The Transportation Department hurried to clear at least 20 major
    roads closed by mudslides and flooding, and in Malibu, crews
    prepared to destroy a boulder the size of a house that dangled
    precariously above the Pacific Coast Highway, held back by only a
    retaining wall. Crews also worked to fill thousands of potholes -
    some the size of cars.
    Engineers fanned out across Los Angeles to assess whether houses
    on slipping soil were still habitable. More than 100 homes were
    temporarily uninhabitable or safe only for limited entry.
    Los Angeles city fire spokesman Brian Humphrey said some
    ambulance crews had been diverted to work as reconnaissance teams
    to spot signs of flooding and mudslides.
    Firefighters, meanwhile, were working 24-hour shifts with little
    time to eat or even use the restroom. On Monday, the heaviest day
    of rain, the department received nearly 2,000 calls - twice the
    normal amount, Humphrey said.
    Rain fell early in the day Wednesday across part of Southern
    California but was expected to taper off as the storm's center
    headed east along the California-Mexico border.
    The storms began last Thursday, bringing 9.14 inches by
    Wednesday morning to a city where the average for an entire year is
    about 15 inches. Damage in Los Angeles County alone since Jan. 1
    was estimated at $52.5 million, including up to $10 million in
    damage caused by the latest storm.
    In Ventura County, the small Santa Paula airport remained closed
    after more than 155 feet of runway crumbled into the rushing Santa
    Clara River. Mudslides forced Amtrak to suspend train service
    between Los Angeles and Santa Barbara through at least Thursday.
    Among those killed were a man who was driving when a eucalyptus
    tree fell on his pickup truck in San Diego County and a 16-year-old
    girl who was doing homework in an apartment bedroom when boulders
    hit her home near Irvine.
    Rainfall since July 1, when California begins its yearly
    rainfall measurements, now totals 34.36 inches - more than Seattle
    or Portland and the most in Los Angeles since 1889-90. The record
    for a single year - 38.18 inches - was set in 1883-84.
    South of the border in Tijuana, Mexico, authorities reported at
    least seven homes had collapsed in landslides and more than 150
    people were evacuated.
    Associated Press Writer Ryan Pearson contributed to this report.
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
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