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Moment firefighter leans on a fence while watching trapped driving instructor’s car SINK in 4ft of floodwater – after emergency crews stood by because they’re ‘only allowed to go in as far as waist-high’


This is the moment a firefighter leans on a fence while watching a trapped driving instructor’s car sink in 4ft of floodwater – after emergency crews stood by because they were ‘only allowed to go in waist-high’.

In footage seen by MailOnline, the motorist is left stranded in a notorious ford in Ingatestone, Essex, with water ‘up to his chest’ while a fireman watches on and says: ‘Yeah, he’s on the phone… he’s alright.’

Filmmaker Jamie Price and his partner Danielle, both 32, bravely waded into the deep water to rescue the motorist because they ‘thought he was going to die’ when they arrived at the scene yesterday. 

Two Essex fire and rescue crews, an ambulance and a police car were parked near the stricken vehicle, but Mr Price revealed how they would not enter the water because they had to wait for specialist crews who were trained for the water depth.

Mr Price, who has stepped in to save dozens of people in the same ford before, told MailOnline: ‘I thought he was going to die. I thought the man is trapped in the car up to his chest. 

‘I knew for a fact the water was freezing cold. He’d obviously been in there for some time waiting for the fire brigade to arrive.’

Mr Price said that they feared the specialist crews would not arrive in time because they were coming from Colchester, which is why they decided to take action themselves. 

He explained: ‘I noticed the driver was still in there and I thought, “Why is there a fireman standing beside him on the radio leaning up against the fence?”

Do YOU know the driver? Email arthur.parashar@mailonline.co.uk

Footage shows a fireman leaning on a fence while the driving instructor is stranded in his car

Footage shows a fireman leaning on a fence while the driving instructor is stranded in his car

Filmmaker Jamie Price and his partner Danielle waded into the deep water to help the motorist in Ingatestone, Essex, on Sunday morning

Filmmaker Jamie Price and his partner Danielle waded into the deep water to help the motorist in Ingatestone, Essex, on Sunday morning

The learner car was completely submerged in the deep water as the couple intervened to help

The learner car was completely submerged in the deep water as the couple intervened to help 

‘I’m thinking, “Why are they telling him to stay there, why are they not helping him?” So I asked him and that’s when they said they were waiting for other crews to come because they’re only wader trained, and it’s too high for them for their training and what they’re allowed to do.’

Despite the man’s vehicle floating in the water, the fireman can be seen leaning on a fence and saying on his radio: ‘He’s over the steering wheel, but he’s alright. He can’t open the windows.’ 

He adds: ‘Yeah, he’s on his phone, he’s alright.’

But when the driving instructor was rescued by Mr Price and his partner, he appears extremely panicked and shouts: ‘I’m going to sink!’

Speaking about what state the driving instructor was in, Mr Price said: ‘He was still on the phone to the operator at the time when I got him out. When I got him out he was dazed and he wasn’t thinking clearly. That’s how I knew he was in shock.’ 

He added: ‘It’s a very, very, very dangerous ford, probably the most dangerous ford in the country if I’m completely honest at the moment.’

Mr Price said that the fire brigade was telling him not to help but that the motorist looked like he was going to drown so he had to intervene.

The filmmaker said he understood it was a difficult situation for the fire and rescue crews and that he knew they did want to do something. But he admitted it didn’t look good that the fire brigade were ‘doing nothing’ while two strangers rescued him.

The couple managed to get the instructor out of the water and then took him to the emergency workers

The couple managed to get the instructor out of the water and then took him to the emergency workers

Crews from Essex Fire and Rescue, as well as an ambulance and police car were at the scene

Crews from Essex Fire and Rescue, as well as an ambulance and police car were at the scene

He continued: ‘I felt a bit bad for them to be honest, because it’s not like they’re not capable of helping, and it’s not like they didn’t want to help, but the legislation and the risk assessments and things that they have to abide by obviously hampers how they were able to assist that man.

‘As a member of the public, I’m not governed by the same rules. The risk assessment to me was not important. The man’s life outweighed any other risk to me.

‘He was [thankful] but we didn’t even do it for that to be honest. At that stage when you’re in that position, you don’t need a thank you. That man’s safety is paramount, that is the thank you.’

Mr Price was also pictured last December rescuing a woman who was trapped in her car. 

Essex Fire and Rescue Service previously said in a statement: ‘Crews who arrived at the incident at Buttsbury Wash found a car stuck in over 1.2 metres of floodwater. 

‘Because of the depth, these crews requested additional support from our specialist water team while they remained at the scene to ensure the driver was safe. 

Jamie Price, 32, also jumped in to save a woman in December

Jamie Price, 32, also jumped in to save a woman in December

He carried her in his arms as she got stranded in the deep water

He carried her in his arms as she got stranded in the deep water 

‘The driver got out of the car themselves.

‘Our advice for motorists is not to drive through floodwater. Essex County Fire and Rescue Service is committed to making Essex a safe place to live, work, and travel. We want to help prevent and reduce incidents like this occurring.

‘Please do not drive through flood water. You don’t know how deep it could be, and you could put yourself and others at risk. Always find an alternative route.’

It comes as intense rainfall this weekend saw rivers burst their banks, roads cut off in villages and damage caused to homes and businesses.



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