'It was scary': Botetourt County couple recalls being trapped in flash flood on property

Couple trapped by downed power lines, tree

By Colter Anstaett - Reporter

BOTETOURT COUNTY, Va. - Peter and Carol Shultz only intended to make a quick trip to the end of their driveway Monday night to check on the culvert that runs underneath, but the quick trip quickly turned into a long, dangerous wait.

"We heard a crack and down came the tree. It just missed the front of the truck," Peter Schultz said.

That wouldn't be their last problem, though.

"As I looked in the mirror, I saw the wires from the pole right alongside the truck," he recalled.

The tree pulled down the overhead power line, preventing them from backing up.

With water all around them, and not knowing if the line was still energized, they didn't want to get out and risk getting electrocuted so they had no choice but to sit in their truck and call for help.

"It was scary. We didn't know how high the water was going to get," Peter Schultz said.

For the first responders, like Botetourt County Fire and EMS Battalion Chief Brandon Golla, that answered the Schultzs' call for help, the situation was also tense.

"It's never a comfortable feeling when you have someone that's stranded and you can't immediately get to them," Golla said.

He said the department's constant training for situations like this paid off.

"Our crews were able to assess the situation and position themselves where they needed to," he said.

For the Schultzs', the driveway is now clear, but their work is far from over.

"We do have several trees marked from Botetourt Electric, that are hazardous to the lines and they're going to be coming out hopefully within a couple weeks," Carol Schultz said.

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