How to react if your vehicle is submerged in water - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

How to react if your vehicle is submerged in water

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

Many neighborhoods and communities in the Tennessee Valley are on or near a body of water.  While slim, there's always a chance a driver could find themselves in an emergency situation in the water.

After Monday night's tragic incident in Bledsoe County. Channel 3 wanted to get some answers, what could you do to save your life and the lives of others in a similar situation?

"Like any type of emergency you need to have a plan," says Hamilton County Special Tactics and Rescue Services Chief Clay Ingle. "The first thing you got to do is calm down, undo your seat belt."

If a vehicle is submerged in water opening the doors will be difficult.

"When you get ready roll your window down so you can equalize the pressure to open your car door and then you and your child exit. If you have to go back, you go back to get one child at a time but you've got to be able to save yourself first to do that," Ingle says.

He says most vehicles will have enough power, once in the water, to allow the driver to roll down the window as long as the key is turned on. However, for reassurance there are tools you can use.

"Its called Life Hammer, basically has these points right here. You swing it just like a normal hammer," says Tony Ransom at ACE Hardware.

Tools like the Life Hammer come in handy in more ways than one. "If you can't get your seat belt lose it also has a nice blade you can use to cut open the seat belts," says Ransom.

Different versions of the Life Hammer cost between $10 and $20, but likely money well spent.

"Ten to $20 a lifetime could save a life," Ransom says.

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