Gainesville Fire-Rescue's Swift Water Rescue Team snatched six people - three adults and three children - from two cars that had been washed into rising floodwaters late Friday night, Jan. 10.
The six were taken to the hospital to be checked out, GF-R Capt. Randy Prestage said as his crew loaded rescue boats onto trailers on scene around midnight Friday night. He described the children as "little bitty" - ages 4, 6 and 7.
Two cars remained in a field near the end of Dairy Lane south of Gainesville, slowly being submerged in the rising waters of the Elm Fork of the Trinity River.
While the rescue team is frequently called to flooded areas throughout Texas, this was the first rescue the team had carried out near Gainesville since 2007, Prestage said. (Update: The department clarified that it did carry out rescues locally during flooding in 2009 as well and has been called to other rescues since.)
Another firefighter noted it was also the crew's 21st call of the day.
First responders have been busy in the wake of extensive rainfall and multiple tornado warnings issued for Cooke County. Prestage said drivers encountering flooded roadways need to "turn around, don't drown" - rather than risk possibly being swept away in fast-rising floodwaters.
A firefighter involved in the rescue effort said the car had eventually gotten stuck in a hay field flooded about 2.5 get deep. In the half-hour the rescue took, he estimated, the water rose easily a foot.
It's not clear as of early Saturday morning where the cars left the roadway. Old Denton Road was shut down just south of Anthony Street in Gainesville with water flowing over it. Spring Creek Road was fully passable shortly after midnight.
This report will be updated.