Couple rescued from home
February 22, 2014 10:59 AM
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WEST BOLIVAR — The Blairsville fire department’s water rescue team used a small inflatable boat Friday afternoon to evacuate a couple from their home as it was threatened by rising flood water.

George Burkley, chief of the Blairsville volunteer fire company, said Tubmill Creek was jammed with ice and overflowed its banks, sending water over Creek Road near West Bolivar and around five homes on the opposite side of the road.

[PHOTO: Water rescue team members from the Blairsville and Saltsburg fire departments brought a couple to higher ground Friday after a small stream overflowed its banks near West Bolivar in Westmoreland County. (James J. Nestor/Gazette photo)]

The water rescue team put Tom and Mary Sue Garland, of 901 Creek Road, into the boat and pulled them to higher ground, then returned to the home and turned off some of their home’s utilities and retrieved Mary Sue Garland’s wheelchair.

The Blairsville firefighters were dispatched to the scene about 3 p.m. by Westmoreland County’s 911 center.

Burkley said volunteer firefighters from Bolivar and the Saltsburg fire company’s water rescue members also assisted.

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