Man brought back to life after being submerged for 20 minutes

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A Florida man, submerged in three feet of water for 20 minutes after a wreck on I-95, was brought back to life by the staff at Colleton Medical Center.

The man was critically injured in a single-vehicle wreck on Interstate 95 near mile marker 52 northbound on Tuesday May 26.

Working in three feet of water, Fire-Rescue crews used rescue tools to free the man. He was in cardiac arrest and suffered multiple traumatic injuries having been under the water for over 20 minutes. Crews performed CPR, secured his airway and administered medications while enroute to Colleton Medical Center.

The hospital emergency department staff continued lifesaving efforts and were able to restore pulses.

The Toyota Sequoia was traveling northbound when it left the roadway and entered a water-filled ditch. Witnesses said the SUV flipped over multiple times and landed on its roof in about three feet of water.

A traveler from North Carolina, a Dominion Energy truck driver and a firefighter-EMT from Jasper County Fire-Rescue stopped to render aid. They entered the water and were able to force open the rear passenger’s door, freeing one of the occupants.

The other man was trapped in the vehicle under the water and they were not able to free him.

Fire-Rescue units arrived minutes later. A winch from Battalion’s 1’s vehicle was used to pull the vehicle up off of the roof.

The man was transferred to the Trauma Center at Trident Medical Center. No helicopters could fly due to poor weather conditions. The ambulance crew and the CARE Flight crew assisted with his care during transport.

The S.C. Highway Patrol is investigating the accident.


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