Sugar Land police rescue woman from sinking SUV
It wasn't just that the driver fell asleep behind the wheel, or that her SUV wound up sinking in the middle of a small lake.
What made Saturday's police rescue in Sugar Land, Texas, so heroic is that this lake is a known home to snakes and alligators, according to the Houston Chronicle.
The driver of the SUV, a 48-year-old nurse who has not been identified, was jolted awake when water began rushing into her vehicle just before 6:30 a.m. Saturday. KTRK reported that she had fallen asleep after a long overnight shift.
She and several witnesses called 911 as her SUV began to sink.
The Sugar Land Police Department released dashcam and bodycam footage of the rescue Sunday in a Facebook post. It said the woman's SUV had accelerated off an embankment and ended up several hundred feet offshore.
"Patrol units arrived within minutes, and three police officers immediately jumped into the lake known to include alligators and snakes, smashed a window and pulled the woman to safety," the post read.
One of the three officers was treated for minor cuts. The bodycam footage shows one officer holding on to the base of one window while smashing the window as the car continues to sink.
"I said 'Oh, my God,' " Lubna Kaissi, a witness who lives in the neighborhood that backs up to the lake, told KHOU. "They are amazing. I guess she couldn't get out, so I really went out and thanked [the police]. We appreciate them very much."
Just minutes after the officers pulled the woman from the SUV, it was fully submerged in the lake.
"There's no doubt in my mind that those officers that got there, that broke that window and pulled her out, saved her life," Officer Rodriguez, the fourth Sugar Land Police officer on the scene, told KTRK. "She would not have been able to get out."
Other neighbors told KHOU that two other vehicles have crashed into the same lake, which sits on a dead end street with no lights.