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  • Rikki Lambert

Victorians urged not to drive through floodwater after dramatic rescue from ute roof


A SES supplied image of the ute from which the man was rescued

A man was rescued from his ute on Monday from the swollen Moorabool river after it had broken its banks.


Off the back of 45 millimetres of rain in the region within twelve hours roadways were inundated with floodwater from the early afternoon. Victoria's state emergency service received a priority alert at 3:05pm and dispatched crews to the scene.


VICSES volunteers, arriving shortly before the Air Wing, made contact with the distressed driver, who explained to the team that he had had driven into the floodwater, and his vehicle had been subsumed by a fast-flowing, rapidly rising current.

By the time the crew arrived, the driver had sought refuge on the roof.


The VICSES team were able to get close enough to advise the visibly distressed driver that help - by air - was on the way, and a rope rescue couldn’t be undertaken owing to the distance between the volunteers and the submerged vehicle.

With time of the essence, the VICSES South Barwon Unit Controller, Lisa Keys, and VICSES South Brown volunteer Josh Hutton took their places downstream, in case the distressed driver entered the water.


The Air Wing however arrived promptly, with the man winched from the sinking vehicle to the safety of the helicopter.


The SES said the incident is a timely reminder to never drive through flood water. Before you travel, motorists are asked to check if flooding is likely, plan ahead and make alternative arrangements so you are not driving on flooded roads.

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