Fisherman’s watchful eye saves trapped woman’s life.

When a vehicle goes under water, it’s the immense pressure of the water outside the vehicle that makes the doors impossible to open.

In this dire situation, there are certain things that will increase the likelihood of the passengers’ survival.

When a fisherman on the coast of Lake O’the Pines in Texas saw a Jeep sticking out of the water, though, he didn’t think that someone was in it.

The car was stationary, as if it had been there for a long time, and only a small part of the roof broke the surface of the water. A car in the middle of the lake? It took him a moment to realize what it was. The Jeep was well over 40 feet from the boat ramp.

Fisherman Calls for Help

When it registered that the black shape that he was looking at was actually a car, the fisherman called the Marion County Sheriff’s office at once. Officers arrived in about 20 minutes. After assessing the situation from the shore, they called a wrecker truck.

It was too dangerous for them to wade out into the lake; so when the wrecker arrived and began to make its way to the stranded vehicle, the police officers asked the fisherman to take them out in his boat so they could have a closer look. 

No one expected to see a person in the vehicle, but there she was: a woman trapped inside the submerged Jeep. Luckily for her, the vehicle wasn’t fully submerged and she was still able to breathe.

The fisherman and the wrecker driver wasted no time in rescuing her. They asked her how long she had been trapped inside the sinking vehicle. Her guess was several hours.

How to Survive Being Trapped Underwater

The idea of being stuck inside a sinking vehicle is the stuff that nightmares are made of. Although this situation is highly unlikely to happen, there are a few things to keep in mind that could greatly increase your odds of survival.The first is to remain calm.

If this seems easier said than done, then consider the practical benefits of remaining calm. Slower breathing means you won’t use up the oxygen in the cabin as quickly. It also means you’ll be able to take action.

What action should you take? Your first thought should be to unlock all the doors and throw them open. If there’s any time at all before the car starts to sink, you will be able to escape much more easily from open doors. In the very least, unlock those doors. 

If your car is sinking fast, you might not have time to open the doors. But, again, you shouldn’t panic—there are still options. Once the car has settled and is fully submerged, that same intense pressure that held your doors shut tight will equalize with the pressure in the vehicle.

Spend that time unbuckling, opening windows if possible, and getting ready to go. Once the cabin has filled with water, you will be able to push the doors open and get out.

Quick Thinking Saves Lives

While the Texan woman was rescued in time, the incident was not without its scars. It had been a chilly spring morning, and first responders had to treat her for hypothermia. Police officers at the scene also realized that this woman had been reported missing.

Had the fisherman not seen the outline of the Jeep’s roof, they might never have found her in time.

Because the woman’s Jeep had not sunk all the way to the bottom, she had enough air to keep her alive. But that position in the water also made it impossible to open the doors.

The fisherman’s quick thinking saved her life.