Vinita — Two Grand River Dam Authority Police Officers put their swift water rescue skills and equipment to work early Tuesday morning, May 1, during flash flooding in Craig County.
GRDA Officers Scott Cox and Tyler Brown worked alongside Bobby Gilman of the Centralia
Volunteer Fire Department to rescue occupants from flooded residences west of Welch.
“Our vessel was the only one of three capable of being used in the rescues based on the fact that it was equipped with tilt and trim,” said GRDA Homeland Security Superintendent Chris Carlson, “and I’m told the waters were dangerously swift in places, it was dark, windy and still raining.”
Using the boat, the GRDA officers and Gilman made several runs from Highway 10 to a group of residences approximately two miles north, in swift waters ranging from eight inches to 15 foot deep. Several trips were made to rescue seven adults, five children and even five family dogs.
“It was an excellent showing of service, and I want to commend all those involved for their courage and skill during a dangerous time,” said GRDA Chief Executive Officer/Director of Investments Dan Sullivan. “Our officers are here to help in such times and we are proud to work with other agencies, like the Centralia Fire Department, to assist citizens of Northeast Oklahoma.”
Headquartered in Vinita, GRDA is Oklahoma’s state-owned electric utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Directly or indirectly, GRDA’s low-cost, reliable; electricity serves nearly 500,000 homes in Oklahoma and stretches into 75 of 77 counties in the state. At no cost to Oklahoma taxpayers, GRDA also manages 70,000 surface acres of lakes in the state, including Grand Lake, Lake Hudson and the W.R. Holway Reservoir. Today, GRDA’s 500 employees continue to produce the same “power for progress” that has benefited the state for 75 years.
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