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How to save yourself from a sinking vehicle

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Updated: 5/10/2013 8:37 pm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- Two SUVs sunk in retention ponds in one week right here in Jacksonville. Police say cars crashing into retention ponds have become a problem in Florida because there are so many waterways on the sides of our state's highways.

Local driver Adam Davis says every day on his way to work he passes the same pond that swallowed 55-year-old David B. Brown's SUV. It's not the first time he's seen a car crash into these waters.

"I've seen it before," he said.

Police say retention ponds can become deathtraps for drivers.

Action News took those concerns to Jacksonville Fire and Rescue to find out how you can survive a dangerous plunge into water. The shocking answer:

"Do not worry about dialing 911," said Tom Francis, JFRD spokesman.

Instead, he says put the phone down and revert to your natural instincts.

"Get out of the car," he adds.

He recommends always keeping a heavy, sharp tool inside your vehicle to break a driver's side window.

"You'll have a bunch of mosaic pieces that you can just rake and get out of the vehicle in that fashion," said Francis.

After all, you are the first line of defense to save yourself from murky waters.

"Put the responsibility in your own hands before giving that responsibility to somebody else," said Davis.

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