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Vernon  

Shocking tale of survival

UPDATE: 3:30 p.m.

April Brooks was waiting inside for her husband, Cameron, to take a quick dip in their pond when she realized it was taking too long.

“I saw his arm hanging over the embankment. I ran over to see him in a paralyzed state,” said April.

She ran over and asked what happened, but all he could say was that he was sorry and their dogs were dead.

When Brooks realized what had happened, she called 911 and her husband was airlifted to Kelowna General Hospital.

Once at the hospital, he told her he was going to clear a pump of debris and let their two dogs swim. One dog jumped in, yelped and went stiff moments before Cameron and the other dog were jumping mid-air into the same water.

“He was on his hands and knees in the water, inches from his chest, when he was able to ... crawl his way up our driveway and embankment,” recalls Brooks.

Her husband is recovering in hospital, and she said he is very stiff, and has bruises and burns to his legs.

“My heart hurts for him in those moments. I honestly can't imagine what he was thinking,” she said.

“I'm glad our toddler was napping from his day at the Armstrong pool and hadn't gone down with him, or this could have been very, very bad.”

Brooks thanked the Armstrong firefighters who responded to the incident.

“The doctors and investigators have said they have no idea how he survived, and with all his body parts intact,” she said.


ORIGINAL: 1:36 p.m.

An Armstrong man is lucky to be alive after suffering severe electrical burns while trying to save his two dogs on Sunday.

The man, in his 20s, was walking his animals on the 4000 block of Schubert Road in Armstrong when the dogs bounded into a small creek, said Armstrong/Spallumcheen Fire Chief Ian Cummings.

"There was a submersible pump in the creek and when the dogs jumped in they were immediately electrocuted," said Cummings. "The man waded up to his thighs trying to rescue the dogs but was overcome by electricity."

The fire chief said it was amazing the victim was able to get out of the water and crawl up the bank where his wife found him some time later. She called emergency services.

"He was medivaced to Kelowna General Hospital and was released later that night. He has burns to his legs. He was amazingly lucky to get out of that water alive."

The two dogs did not survive, said Cummings.

Cummings and representatives from the BC Safety Authority were at the site Monday morning.

"I believe there are issues with the wiring of the pump," said Cummings, who added the site was on private land.

- with files from Kate Bouey



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