Ottawa (Canada) August 13: Ottawa police are looking for a Good Samaritan who helped an officer pull a drowning woman from a swimming pool last month, likely saving her life.
Const. Laura Monette, who's been on the force for less than a year, was patrolling the city's Vanier neighbourhood on July 29 when she got a call about a possible drowning at an apartment complex, police said.
When she arrived, she found a woman at the bottom of an indoor pool, about three metres down.
Monette pulled off her protective vest and gun belt and was about to jump in when a young man approached and told her he was going into the water with her.
Monette, who's described in an Ottawa Police Service account of the incident as a strong swimmer, soon ran into trouble herself.
"I was weighted down by my boots and pocket contents," Monette is quoted saying. "It definitely made it harder for me to get to the woman."
As Monette resurfaced to catch her breath, the young man reached the woman first and began pulling her to the surface. The rescuers handed the woman over to bystanders on the deck, who pulled her out of the water. Monette instructed them to turn the woman onto her side.
Still struggling, Monette was unable to pull herself out of the pool and had to use the ladder to get out. She rushed to the woman, who had been submerged for several minutes and was by that time turning blue and foaming at the mouth. Finding no pulse, she began performing CPR. Paramedics soon arrived and took over.
In the frenzy, police said Monette lost track of the young man who had helped her save the woman.
'He was so brave'
"When I looked around for him, he was gone. I didn't get his name, but I wanted to tell him he was so brave to do what he did. She probably wouldn't be alive if he hadn't acted when he had," Monette is quoted saying.
Ottawa police said witnesses told Monette the woman, who was a weak swimmer, had been in the shallow end of the pool with a friend but lost her footing. Her friend tried to reach her with a pole, but the woman went under and didn't reemerge.
"If you find yourself in a similar situation, take control. Tell someone to call 911 and then start rescue efforts," Monette is quoted saying. "You won't be in trouble if emergency services arrive and you have already gotten the person to safety. And, if you aren't successful, you know help will be there as quickly as possible."
Source: CBC News