BALTIMORE (WJZ) — An accident sends a man 30 feet over the side of JFX into the rushing waters below. A police officer–also hurt in the crash.
Rochelle Ritchie has details.
It’s a dramatic rescue at the Jones Falls River, after a man plummets 25 feet off I-83.
“My first thought was, ‘get help or dive in the water,'” a man said.
Baltimore Police say an officer was investigating a single vehicle accident. He and another man were standing on the interstate when things took a turn for the worse.
“A second vehicle traveling southbound struck the vehicle involved in the initial accident. The police officer on scene was struck by this vehicle. He sustained an injury to his leg,” said Detective Jeremy Silbert, Baltimore City Police.
A crash so powerful, it sent a man flying over the wall.
“I thought the guy was dead,” a bystander said.
Baltimore City Police actually had to work their way through waist deep water in order to rescue the man, who had fallen on a patch of grass in the middle of the Jones Falls River.
A WJZ photographer catches the heroic efforts by Baltimore City Police and Firefighters.
The man lies helplessly as crews use a ladder to get rescue equipment over the rushing waters. Once safely secured, rescuers lift the man and take him to the ladder that is being used as a bridge.
A rope is tightly tied to the stretcher. On one side, a firefighter crawls over the water to reach the man balancing himself on the wobbly ladder. The victim is pulled and pushed to safety.
The water, rapidly moving beneath them. The tense few minutes seem to last forever.
“They did a great job,” a man said.
The rescue mission is a success. Back on dry ground, the man is rushed to the hospital.
Union reps with the ACLU say this area of I-83 is notorious for accidents.
“This spot on the highway is incredibly dangerous because there is an accident here almost every time it rains,” said David Rocah, ACLU spokesperson.
Baltimore City Police are not able to say if damp roads caused the accident.
There is no word on the condition of the man who fell into the river. The Baltimore City officer was taken to the hospital for a leg injury.