Man Describes Barely Escaping Floodwaters on Hickman

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Floodwaters on Hickman Road (WHO-HD)

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DES MOINES, Iowa  --  Shane Blanchard was driving down Hickman Road after avoiding several other flooded streets when water came rushing into his vehicle from all directions, causing the road to give way and his car to get stuck.

"The water was coming so hard and I put my car in neutral, and the water started pushing me down the hill. And I got down to the bottom of the hill on Hickman Road right where it says Prospect Drive, and there’s, like, a park sign there. The water pushed me from that park sign about 30 or 40 feet down the road. And I was just sitting in my car and water started coming in under my doors," Blanchard said.

That's when Blanchard realized he had to get out, climb on top of his car, and figure out what to do next.

"And then I got onto the roof of the car and still kind of looking around, and I'm like, okay, I'm going to have to jump. And so I had my phone and my billfold and I kept that above my head because I didn't want to get them wet, and there was a tree line probably about 30 yards away from me and the water was running that way. So I figured if I could get in that stream and let it take me to those trees, I could grab onto something to help me get out," Blanchard said.

That's exactly what he did, and swam through the debris-filled waters to reach higher ground.

"It was just lucky a cop happened to be coming down the road and put his light on me. I waved him down and jumped in. He wanted me to go to the hospital, but I didn’t want to. I went to the gas station instead to wait for a ride," Blanchard said.

He said the situation was scary, and it's something he wants others to use as a learning experience.

"If you see water on the road and you think you can get through it, don't even try it. Because you do not know what’s going on underneath of it, and that’s what got me. There was a hole in the road from the water and it took me away. So don't chance it.”

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