Major's escape from watery grave

A FATHER trapped in freezing water when his car plunged upside down into a deep drainage channel has told of his dramatic brush with death.Major Dan Sepdham, a doctor from RAF Lakenheath, miraculously managed to break free and swam to safety from the submerged car.

A FATHER trapped in freezing water when his car plunged upside down into a deep drainage channel has told of his dramatic brush with death.

Major Dan Sepdham, a doctor from RAF Lakenheath, miraculously managed to break free and swam to safety from the submerged car.

The airman, a GP on the base, says his escape was nothing short of a miracle and is convinced he owes his survival from yesterday'searly-morning ordeal to God.

Major Sepdham, who lives in Thetford with his wife and two young children, was on his way to the American airbase when he lost control of his car on the bridge between the A11 and A1065.


You may also want to watch:


Last night, he said it was not until he got to safety that he realised how close he had been to drowning inside his car as it sunk beneath the water.

"The car sank so quickly and at first I started to panic, but then I tried to calm down because I realised if I didn't I would never get out," said Major Sepdham, 32, who did not need medical treatment.

Most Read

"I managed to release my seat belt but when I tried the door handle it wouldn't open because of the pressure outside of the car.

"All of a sudden I looked over my shoulder and I could see a light at the back of the car, which I just swam towards and the next thing I knew I was on the surface of the water."

Major Sepdham managed to climb on top of his car, by which point only the four wheels were visible.

"I just stood there for a few minutes in complete shock at what had just happened," he said.

"I really think it is a miracle that I got out of my car alive and I thank God that I am still here to talk about it.

"When I left the house all the windows on the car were up and so I still have no idea how I managed to swim out of it.

"I came so close to leaving my wife and children without a husband and father and it has been a very humbling experience."

A spokesman for Manchetts, a locally based recovery firm, said: "We had to use a boat to get out to the car which we attached to a crane and lifted back up onto the bridge.

"It took us just under an hour to recover the vehicle from the water and I think the driver in the car was definitely very lucky to escape.

"There have been similar situations in the past when people have drowned and if the man had been knocked unconscious as his car went into the water then the situation could have been a lot worse."

A spokesman for Suffolk police said officers were called to the incident.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter