Man stuck in SUV saved from surging river

WAPATO, Wash. (NBC/KNDU) — The rescue of a man from his SUV in a surging Washington river was captured on video.

A witness saw the driver veer off the road and into the Yakima River, where he was trapped inside his SUV.

Officials say Art Gonzalez called 911 and kept the driver calm until the rescue team arrived.

They pulled the man to safety, and he was taken to the hospital for treatment of hypothermia.

The Yakima County Sheriff’s Department said Gonzalez played a huge role in the success of the rescue.

“He didn’t just call it in and leave,” said Deputy Peter Schick. “He came down to the shoreline and continued to keep the man calm and communicate with him throughout the whole time we were here.”

Facondo Hernandez is the driver of the SUV, and officials are working to figure out what caused him to veer into the river. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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