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Woman Stranded in Car in Flooded River Rescued by Game Warden

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A Maine Game Warden rescued a 76-year-old Florida woman after she became stranded in flood waters from the Crooked River in Waterboro, Monday, May 1.


Warden Wiegman was headed south on the Hunts Corner Road in Waterford at approximately 11:20 pm Monday night when he came across a section of the road flooded by the Crooked River. As he approached the flooded area, he noticed a vehicle that appeared stuck in the water, with water about halfway up the doors on the downstream side, about 50 yards away from the unflooded section of the road.

Upon getting out of the truck, Wiegman heard a woman yelling for help from inside of the car. After determining there was only one person in the vehicle, Wiegman immediately put on his float coat (a Personal floatation device that is coat) and grabbed another PFD (personal floatation device) for the woman in the car.

With the flooded river current creating unsure footing conditions, Wegman slowly shuffled his way towards the vehicle, and upon getting there, found 76-year-old Karen Palmer of Leesburg, Florida, in the car, hypothermic from the river water that had filled the vehicle halfway up the doors. Palmer was disoriented from the cold, and was unable to describe how she got stuck, or how long she was there.

Wiegman was able to get the PFD on Palmer, then got her out of the car, and was able to assist her back to his truck by tightly holding her onto his body and shielding her from the current as he shuffled back to the truck through the river. Once back to the truck, Palmer warmed up inside the truck, became more coherent, and informed Wiegman that she absolutely needed her medicine that was in the car.

At this point, Game Warden Sarah Miller arrived, and assisted Wiegman as he went back to the flooded car, where he retrieved the medicine and some personal items for Palmer. Palmer was then examined by EMS personnel who had arrived later on the scene, and was released.

Since Palmer could not drive, Warden Wiegman drove her back to Poland where she was staying.

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