ST. LOUIS – A busy stretch of Interstate 64 flooded in St. Louis during rush hour Friday afternoon due to a water main break. Fire crews rescued one family after their minivan ended up stuck in water.
Laura Kramer says she’s grateful for the help from the St. Louis Fire Department. She was on her way to the Saint Louis Zoo, traveling with her father and her son Liam.
Suddenly, a 30-inch water main broke by the Tamm Avenue overpass. Water gushed down on the highway around 4:15 p.m. Some drivers were able to cross the highway almost immediately before it shut down in both directions for several hours.
“The cars were crossing. So my father says if the small cars are crossing, you can cross, just go fast,” said Kramer.
As other cars crossed, she said the waves of water were getting pushed towards her car. The engine then stopped.
SkyFOX, powered by Bommarito Automotive Group, captured the moment on camera when Kramer’s family was rescued from her stranded minivan. You can see little Liam being carried away by a firefighter.
It was a matter of perfect timing. Just as they realized they were stuck in the water, they saw the fire department behind them rolling up to help. The family couldn’t roll the windows down to a point of escape because the car stopped.
“It was a miracle that the car started for one second, I put the windows down, and [the car] stopped working again,” said Laura.
Water was quickly starting to rush into the car. Laura’s husband Thomas Kramer was nearby when she called him.
“When she started saying the water was coming into the vehicle, that’s when I said, ‘Oh my gosh,’” said Thomas. “That was terrifying because I couldn’t get there. I knew where she was after these calls, but I couldn’t get there.”
The family said they are extremely grateful to all the first responders who helped.
“Thank you, thank you so much,” said Laura. “Thank you to the fire department, to the police department because they were our angels that God sent for us to protect us.”
“We never know exactly why we’re put in a certain place at a certain time, but for some reason they were there,” said Thomas.
The family told us they were able to salvage a few items from the car, and they were able to make it to the zoo, despite everything that happened.