The Latest: Rescue teams talk about missions during flooding

South Carolina
Posted at 3:40 PM, Oct 05, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-05 15:40:00-04

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Two members of the South Carolina Helicopter Aquatic Rescue Team based at McEntire Joint National Guard Base say they have rescued between 25 and 30 people over the last two days.

Chief Warrant Officer 3 Will Sirmon, says his team was able to maneuver rescue baskets down to many houses to pluck people from their porches. They would see people waiving towels and that's how they knew to go get some of them.

Henry Hickman, a firefighter from Myrtle Beach, said his most dangerous mission Sunday was plucking a man from a tree in moving water in Sumter County.

Hickman said the man appeared to have tried to drive through moving water and had abandoned his vehicle and was clinging to a tree in rising water.

He said the man had been there several hours but his team was able to access him by helicopter and turn him over to the local EMS workers.