When you see a brightly colored, reflective traffic arm blocking the path of your car, you probably assume it’s down for a good reason — to keep you and your vehicle safe from whatever is going on beyond it. But one driver apparently saw that precautionary measure as an optional kind of thing, and ended up with his minivan stuck in the gap of a drawbridge.
According to Green Bay Metro Fire Department, the man somehow got his vehicle around the bridge’s gates, reports WBAY.com.
As a result, his van was too far out onto the bridge as it was opening, allowing his vehicle to become wedged into the gap.
“We had a couple firemen that put harnesses on so we could tie ’em off so they wouldn’t have to have anything to worry about falling anywhere,” a lieutenant with the Green Bay Metro Fire Department told the news station.
From there, they cut a hole in the van’s roof and stuck a ladder through it so the driver could climb out himself. Neither the bridge nor the man suffered any serious injuries.
It could have been worse: His car could’ve dropped into the bridge bottom 40-50 feet below. Police say that would have been a very dangerous situation; not only for the driver, but for rescue personnel.
The city’s police department is now investigating how it happened, noting that the man apparently didn’t have a valid driver’s license.
This isn’t the first time this particular bridge has swallowed a vehicle — in 2000, rescue crews performed a similar feat — so police make sure to train officers on how to deal with such situations, and can adapt to different circumstances when the time comes.
“We’re always putting up vehicles in different positions and figuring out different ways of doing things,” the lieutenant explained to WBAY.