Streets Flood in MD

December 23, 2008 10:52:03 AM PST
A massive water main break made a Maryland suburb look more like Niagara Falls Tuesday Hundreds of millions of gallons turned a morning commute into an emergency as motorists had to be plucked from their cars by boat and helicopter. Luckily, no serious injuries are reported.

River road in Bethesda, Maryland became just that when a 66-inch water main ruptured letting loose a torrent of water and trapping drivers, many on their way to work, just after 8:00 AM this Tuesday morning.

Television cameras caught the dramatic rescues, such as this one; when a woman and a child--stranded in four feet of rushing, frigid water, hoisted themselves into a large wire basket with a rescue helicopter hovering above.

At least a dozen people had to be pulled from their vehicles--some by boat. But with the main gushing 135 million gallons of water per minute, it gave rescue crews all they could handle.

Temperatures last week were in the 60s, then below freezing, these old water mains can't take the stress. As authorities worked to shut off two valves and parts of the road gave way, some of the motorists were being treated for hypothermia.

While river road is a major artery for traffic...the fact that it's Christmas week might have been the only thing that prevented more commuters from driving into harm's way.



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