Peggy Kiefer/Grove Sun

A male driver and two female passengers were rescued from their jeep that was caught is swift water on Lion Ranch Road and an overflowing Drowning Creek early Monday morning.

The driver stated that he is not familiar with that area and was heading to Tulsa. He said he came around the curve and the next thing he knew he was stuck in the water. He tried to turn around but it was too late. The driver called 911 and informed Grove Dispatch that he and his passengers were stranded on top of their jeep. Zena Fire, Jay Fire, Grove Fire, Jay EMS, Grove EMS, GRDA and Lakemont Fire were all called to the


“When I heard the situation I immediately called Grove Ladder Truck,” said Matt Outhier, Zena Fire Chief. Although they didn’t use the ladder truck for this rescue, Outhier said they have used it in the

past for the same type of rescue.

Rusty Lewis, Zena Fire, Carlos Hernandez and Danny Tanner, Jay Fire and Rescue and Nathan Davis, Grove Fire, used their swift water rescue training skills to bring the stranded travelers to safety. All have been trained and certified in swift water rescue and continue to renew their skills each year.

“It goes to show the importance of this kind of training. It isn’t used all the time, but when it is needed, it is important to know what to do. All agencies cooperated very well and did an excellent job,” said Mike

Reed, Grove Fire Marshall.

The rescue also helped the departments determine equipment needs for such and event. “When I got back to the State I ordered new equipment already because of this. We had to borrow life jackets from the other departments because ours are outdated,” said Outhier. Several local departments will attend a swift water rescue training course next month