ISP warns motorists to beware of high water due to rapid snowmelt

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (ADAMS) – Indiana State Police with the Fort Wayne Post are warning of the dangers of driving into standing water. They say a water rescue operation conducted by the Berne & Geneva Fire Departments Thursday morning in southern Adams County, was the result of a motorist that attempted to drive a passenger car through a flooded area of a roadway near the Wabash River.

The high water conditions were, and continue to be the result of the heavy snowmelt that is presently occurring across the region, causing rivers, streams, ditches and roadways to experience flooding conditions. The driver and ten passengers were successfully rescued and did not require any medical attention.

ISP officials released the following:

“This incident highlights the possible dangers associated with motorists that attempt to drive through flooded roadway conditions, especially in areas where flooding is common and high water caution signs are permanently posted.

The Indiana State Police reminds motorists to never attempt to drive through a flooded roadway! Doing so can quickly cause a vehicles engine to stall, rendering the vehicle and occupants disabled in the flooded water. Often times heavy currents will then lift and drift the vehicle off the roadway into deeper water, creating a potentially life threatening situation.

Motorists should always use caution when entering an area that has permanently posted signs for high water, especially during times of heavy rain or snow melt. Don’t become complacent. These signs are posted for a reason.

If you come to a flooded roadway, motorists should TURN AROUND and find alternate route. “Turn Around, Don’t Drown”
If your vehicle becomes stranded in flooded water, stay in the vehicle if at all possible and call 911 for rescue assistance.
Exiting the vehicle should be considered a last resort. Don’t be deceived-water current is extremely powerful and unpredictable.

Exiting the vehicle may create an even more dangerous situation of being swept away in the current.

Hoosier motorists should expect to see continued conditions of high water on our roadways as this rapid snow melt continues. Please use caution and good judgement when driving in areas known for high water.

Taking unnecessary risk jeopardizes your safety, your passengers safety, and the safety of all first responders coming to your rescue.”