WATCH: Cop leaps into Black Country canal to save vulnerable woman
This is the dramatic moment a police officer jumped into a freezing Black Country canal to save a vulnerable woman.
The woman was struggling to stay afloat after reportedly jumping into the water from a 15ft canal bridge near Bentley Bridge in Wednesfield.
Police were sent to the scene and urged the woman woman to swim to the side, but it soon became apparent she was struggling to stay above water.
At that moment quick-thinking response officer threw off his jacket, leapt in and saved the woman, who was taken for a mental health assessment having left hospital earlier in the day
WATCH the dramatic rescue:
Police body-cam footage has now been released showing the rescue unfold.
The 39-year-old officer, whose identity has not been revealed, said: "The canal is pretty deep and wide at the point she’d entered the water... certainly too deep to stand.
"The woman wasn’t responding to our commands to swim to the side and, with her clothes heavy with water, I could see she was being dragged under.
"I knew someone had to act soon so I jumped in to get her.
"Cold would be an understatement − it was absolutely freezing − but thankfully I was only in there for a matter of seconds. I wouldn’t have fancied spending any longer in there.
"It was our first call for service of the day − an interesting way to start my shift − and I was back on patrol by about 11am having had a shower. I’m pretty sure I still smell of pond water though!"
West Midlands Police Force Incident Manager, Chief Inspector Dave Keen, praised the officer for his heroics.
He added: "There’s always the danger of getting into difficulty yourself or going into shock when jumping into very cold water.
"But the officer has bravely acted on instinct, realising the woman was in trouble and in fearing she could drown.
"As a police officer on a response unit you never know what you’re going to encounter when you start your shift. They are the front line, reacting to 999 calls for service to help people in immediate need and to combat crime.
"This is a fantastic piece of work from the officer… he may well have saved a life this morning."
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