‘Hug your kids extra tight’

Authorities are looking for five-year-old Kyle Doan, who was swept from his mother’s arms amid rising flood waters near two of the Paso Robles in California on Monday.

The boy disappeared on Monday while his mother, Lindsy Doan, was taking the kindergarten to Lillian Larsen Elementary School, where Ms. Doan also worked as a special education teacher.

His route took him near the intersection of San Marcos Road and Wellsona Road, near a creek swollen with floodwaters. Los Angeles times reports. The family said the intersection was not properly marked for imminent hazards, and fast-moving waters dragged the Doans’ car into a nearby tree.

Kyle Doan caught in California flood waters (SLO County Sheriff)

Kyle Doan caught in California flood waters (SLO County Sheriff)

Lindsey’s husband, Brain Doan, said his wife unbuckled their son’s belt and the two got out of the sinking car.

He was calm. He was trying to say, ‘Calm down mom. “He was doing the best he could.”

The nearby property owners were able to throw a rope at Ms. Doan and save her, but were unable to save Kyle.

“I just want parents to put extra pressure on their own children,” added Ms. Doan. “We missed this opportunity with Kyle. It’s hard to see kids going back to school today knowing that Kyle should be there too. Hug your kids extra tight and be thankful you have them because they could disappear at any moment.”

“Yesterday I got to a point where I thought my tears were over,” she added in an interview with the Associated Press. “I just don’t know what to expect anymore. So, I tried to do a Google search: How long can a child not eat? How long can they stay in wet clothes? … We are worried because I don’t know if they will find him.”

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office continued to search for Kyle throughout Wednesday. Wrote on his Facebook pageIt uses air patrols, drones and an underwater team as part of its research.

First responders said Kyle Doan’s story is a reminder of the dangers that even a few inches of running water on the road can pose.

“We use the term ‘Turn around, don’t drown,'” Scotty Jalbert, director of emergency services for San Luis Obispo County, told the AP. “With this tragedy, when the response teams arrived at the scene, the vehicle was flooded. Obviously, that kind of energy will cause a bad situation.”

He added that those trapped in a flooded car should try to get to the roof if possible.

Call briefly suspended on Monday due to extreme conditions and high water levels.

At least 18 people have died in California storms since late December. CNN reports, Including a woman who was found in a flooded car under 8 to 10 feet of water in Sonoma on Wednesday.

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