Driver survives ordeal

By Pai Mulitalo Ale ,

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WASHED AWAY: The vehicle in the Fuluosou river yesterday.

WASHED AWAY: The vehicle in the Fuluosou river yesterday.

An elderly man is counting his blessings today after he was saved from the ferocious currents of the Fuluasou river yesterday.

The man was the driver of a vehicle that was swept into the river when it attempted to cross the ford at Tulaele. 

Eyewitness, Sam Fa’avae, said the elderly man’s car was travelling from Tulaele and he was heading for Lotopa.

“I was standing on this side while he was coming from the opposite direction. I waved at him to go back,” said Mr. Faavae.

“He didn’t listen."

 “He was driving by himself. The current was very strong and all the vehicles that came through here returned except for him.”

Mr. Fa’avae said the car got into trouble when it reached the middle of the ford.

“The current was so strong it turned the vehicle back to the direction it came from.

 “I saw the car slowly sliding down, with the elderly man still inside.”

At that point, he said he couldn’t do anything to help because the current was very strong. Luckily, 30 meters down the river; the elderly man managed to open his door and got out. Then the current swept him further down, followed by his vehicle. 

Mr. Faavae said the elderly man finally found a log and hung on to it for dear life.

“He was taken to the hospital straight away.” 

Mr. Fa’avae who lives near the ford said this was not the first time an incident like this has happened.

Earlier this year, a bus was swept off the ford. 

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