Man rescued from high water in east Bexar County

Victim screams for help while clinging to tree

SAN ANTONIO – A man who firefighters said was screaming for help as he clung to a tree was rescued Thursday morning from raging flood waters in east Bexar County.

The rescue unfolded around 8 a.m. on Abbott Road near Interstate 10 and FM 1518, where St. Hedwig firefighters heard screams while putting up barricades.

Crews in a helicopter spotted the man stranded on top of a quickly sinking car and clinging to a tree.

"He was, literally, clinging for life," Bexar County Sheriff's Office spokesman James Keith said. "His car had been swept off the road. He was able to get out and he was on top of his car. That is desperation."

When a rescue crew reached him by boat, they had a hard time finding out what happened because the man is from Poland and spoke little English.

"He did tell us, though, that he was driving down the road, and all of a sudden, a wall of water swept across the road and swept his car off the road," Keith said. "Our deputies were able to attest to that as well."

Keith said deputies had trouble getting to the scene because most of the roads leading to the man were flooded.

The man didn't appear to be hurt but was taken to a hospital to be checked out.

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