POLK COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – It happened in an instant.
The storms were so severe in Polk County on Tuesday, witnesses were left in shock.
What they saw terrfied them.
High winds nearly ripped an RV in half, trapping a family of six inside.
Four of them were children.
“The rain was coming down in sheets, we couldn’t even see out the windows,” said Pam Bolinger, an eyewitness who watched in horror. “We couldn’t see anything. Our trailer kept trying to turn over.”
Pam and her family were nearby in their own RV as the straight-line winds ripped through Lake Magic RV Resort in Clermont on 9600 Highway 192 West.
“We just started praying and calling upon God,” said Pam, describing the moment she saw the RV flip over Tuesday. “We were praying because we knew that it was going to be gone.”
Her prayers were answered.
Help was on the way, and it arrived fast.
WIthin minutes, a miracle of sorts took place – thanks to Polk County firefighters.
They got everyone out, one by one, safe and sound.
That family of six survived.
First responders with Polk County Fire Rescue were there in a split second. They worked hard and saved lives as the wicked weather struck just before 1:00 p.m.
The victims were shaken and scared, but filled with gratitude and praise for the first responders who rescued them.
“We’re happy, that’s what we do. We’re there to serve the community and make sure everything went safely and successfully. And, we’re happy that’s the way it turned out,” said Polk County Fire Rescue spokesperson, Chris Jonckheer.
At one point, the wind was so strong, it took a terrifying turn and tossed a semi-truck on its side, then blew over a billboard. The driver of the semi survived and was able to get out of the truck’s cab injured.
For those who were there, it was a moment they’ll never forget.
A story of survival one man described as, “one hell of a storm.”