Watch storm chaser's dramatic rescue of stranded driver on flooded Texas highway

A storm chaser captured the dramatic moments when two cars began to float away off Texas' flooded Highway 87 near O'Donnell and south of Lubbock.

O'DONNELL, Texas – Torrential rains in western Texas this week left roads flooded, and in some cases, drivers trapped in the waters.

Dramatic moments unfolded on camera Thursday as a storm chaser helped a young man in need while his car began to float away. It happened as flood waters left Highway 87 impassable near O'Donnell and south of Lubbock.

Aaron Rigsby said the man, who did not want to be identified, saw other vehicles making it through and thought he could too. However, that was not the case.

When traffic stopped due to cars stalling out as the waters continued to rise, Rigsby said the man realized he was in trouble when his back tires began to lift off the ground. 

"Grabbing a couple of his things, I was able to guide him back to my vehicle and to safety but not before a passing semi nearly knocked the vehicle into us as it passed through the flooded roadways," Rigsby recalled.


Another motorist on Highway 87 captured a similar scene of the flash flood. Bryan Boatright's video below shows a large truck partially submerged and on its side, along with other vehicles swallowed in rushing water.


Dozens of other flooded vehicles from Tahoka to O'Donnell left drivers to be rescued by firefighters before crews could shut down the highway, Rigsby said.

The area received nearly 10 inches of rain in just a few hours, according to Rigsby, and it was impossible for roadway drainage to keep up with it. The Amarillo area is 224% over the average rainfall with 7.3 inches, according to the FOX Forecast Center.

A severe threat increases across the Lone Star state on Friday. On the menu: hail, damaging winds and possibly tornadoes. Nearly 4 million Americans are in the risk zone.