Local hero Mitch Smith has recalled his daring rescue of an elderly woman after her car was swept away by floodwaters at Elmore-Raywood Rd in Elmore just after 7pm on Monday.
As water lifted the 74-year-old woman’s car, she was swept off the road and into Bendigo Creek at Naughtons Bridge and was sent 100m downstream, according to reports.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Elmore man Mitch Smith recalls daring rescue of elderly woman.
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The local hero appeared on Sunrise on Tuesday, explaining the rescue, which saw him swim out to the woman — who was perilously holding on to a tree branch at the time.
Mitch explained he walked down to the creek to take photos and spotted the woman in distress, prompting him to immediately spring into action.
Mitch Smith recalled his daring rescue on Sunrise on Tuesday, after he saved an elderly woman who got caught in the Victorian floodwaters at Elmore. Credit: Seven
“I just took off my boots, jumped in, made my way (to her) — I went from tree to tree, swimming across to her,” Mitch said.
The situation took a turn for the worst, as the elderly woman struggled to keep hold of the branch.
“She was rapidly losing strength and couldn’t hold on for much longer,” Mitch said.
It was then he made the heroic decision to jump back into the floodwaters, get a ratchet strap, and secure her to the tree.
“I made the decision to jump back in,” he said.
“I ran back to my ute, I dove back in (to the water), and ratchet-strapped her back to the tree to take some pressure off her arms.”
Mitch stayed with the elderly woman for an hour and half before they were rescued by first responders. He said he didn’t have a chance to think about his own safety during the ordeal.
“It was pretty overwhelming — It was just instinctive,” he said.
“I just hope someone — if they were capable of doing it — would do it for my grandma.”
Mitch gave an update on the woman saying she was “exhausted” after the rescue.
“I went to see her before I left — she just thanked me for saving her life,” he said.
“It was a pretty heavy situation.”