KUSI’s Ross Becker’s firsthand account of a Mission Valley flood rescue

KUSI's Ross Becker was right in the middle of it all early Wednesday morning at the Premier Inn in Mission Valley where many swift water evacuations took place. Ross found himself trapped in the hotel along with about 50 others hotel guests.

Ross Becker gives us his first hand account of the wet ordeal.

I was checking on the rising flood waters about 3:30am Wednesday morning and ended up walking down the street into the lobby of the Premier Inn. The water came up so quickly no one could get out safely and when the power transformer exploded we were all trapped.

The place was surrounded by water gushing into the lobby and first floor offices. When the hotel guests began waking up they found themselves without lights and without a way to get to their cars.

The water was 6-feet deep and rising in the parking lot. It was a mess and getting worse, quickly.

KUSI's Dan Plante and Photojournalist Mike Saucedo set up across the street while I used a cell phone to communicate with them.

As the swift water rescue lifeguards came to the rescue, the first woman out was nearly nine months pregnant, her husband told me she was scared for herself and the baby.

In order to show you how deep the water was I tried making it to her, to talk to her as she prepared to get into the rescue raft but I got turned back. The lifeguards said the water was rising fast and it wasn't safe. But on the balconys of the hotel the captive audience watched the show, a show one guy told me he should have missed.

One by one the lifeguards took the guests across the street that was now a river. The rest waited in a dripping stairwell. There was no food, no coffee but there were no bad attitudes either.

This was no one's fault, it was nature taking control of so many lives. It reminded me of those stranded on that carnival cruise ship last month. We were stranded too with water everywhere, it kinda felt like we were floating.

I worked with the hotel manager and we got everyone out safety. I took one of the last rescue boats. There was a man with cancer, a woman with diabetes and children were all rescued too. All caught by the storm that came overnight and woke them up with a surprise.

Categories: Becker’s Digital Notebook