Driver Recalls Floodwaters During Harvey Rescue Effort
Truckers are some of the first people called upon in disasters and times of hardship. Though not often given the recognition of other first-responders, no one can provide a proper response without the right supplies.
Many individuals in the freight industry made their way to the Texas area with rescue items in tow after the massive Hurricane Harvey finally dissipated. Even after the initial storm subsided, lingering rains and high floodwaters still pose a risk in the area.
High levels of water pose many dangers including drowning, electrocution, and disease under certain conditions. It is likely the area will face these threats for weeks or even months to come, if not longer.
One trucker jumped at the chance to help out when the disaster struck. Winston Mullings was hired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to haul a generator and trailer from Louisiana to Beeville, Texas.
The driver was traveling on Sam Houston Parkway near Black Hawk Boulevard heading toward the Southwest Freeway on the night of August 28th. It was then he saw first-hand just how serious the situation was.
After noticing three-feet high waters, he then focused on a large bus turned around in front of him. Nearby was a Ford pickup truck, which was floating backwards toward him. Mullings tried to back up as the truck drew near, but couldn’t get any type of traction in the high waters. After blowing his horn, he was eventually rescued by a boat at around 1:30 in the morning.
He later discovered he’d been driving on the shoulder for some time, as the floods made it impossible to view road makers and maintain any type of reliable understanding of one’s surroundings. All he knew was that the disaster was catastrophic, and it brought his trip to a screeching halt.
He took shelter at a location set up by the Red Cross, unable to do anything as his truck floated in the road. Once the waters receded, he was finally able to retrieve his vehicle and the supplies with the help of a tow truck.
He said the truck is a complete loss, as most of the primary mechanical components were submerged for a significant period of time.