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Three Rescues in One Raging Patapsco River

After saving two people stranded in floodwaters, one responder is rescued by peers.

Wednesday afternoon's started with a chance sighting of two people stranded in the Patapsco River's rising waters, according to Howard County officials.

PFC Nick Bingham was driving to Main Street, where . On the way, he noticed two people along River Road on top of a pick-up truck that was stuck in rising water. 

Bingham and an off-duty firefighter, Josh Angelo of Howard County Fire and Rescue, threw the stranded duo a life vest attached to a rope, according to a statement released by the county.

One by one, Bingham and Angelo pulled the two ashore. As they reached dry land, according to the statement, the truck was washed away by the flood waters.

At the same time, the Arbutus Volunteer Fire Department had dispatched to the scene a four-person swift water rescue team and a two-member team from the Texas career fire station.

According to AVFD company commander Capt. Douglas Simpkins Jr., when the teams arrived, they did not see the vehicle, so the swift rescue team headed into the water to investigate. 

“The water was too much for them,” Simpkins said. “The boat was going to capsize on them, so they had to bail out.”

The two-person Texas station team got in the water to help, but the water overtook them and they, too, evacuated before the boat capsized, Simpkins told Patch.

The four members of the first swift water rescue crew were able to float to land, as was one of the firefighters from the Texas station, but the second was injured and had to hold on to a tree in the rushing Patapsco waters.

Angelo and Bingham then got together with the Baltimore County crews to pull the injured firefighter out of the water.

The firefighter was transported to a local hospital for treatment.

 

With reporting by Patch.com editor Bruce Goldfarb.

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