Firefighters rescue man and his dogs from McKinney creek

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Firefighters rescued a man and two of his dogs after they fell into a McKinney creek.

Rick Allford was walking his three dogs near Wilson Creek Parkway and Highway 5 Sunday evening. One of the dogs, Romo, got too close to a creek and fell in.

“I try to take them to a dog park or to a nature trail daily. We went to a nature trail that we hadn’t been down in six months or so. The dogs took off in front of me and within a few minutes I heard a splash. I turned the corner and heard water rushing. I saw my 12-year-old Husky in the water floating down stream,” he said.

Allford did his best to rescue Romo from the bank. But then a second dog named Molly jumped on him and they both went in too. They got stuck in the rushing water, unable to get back up the steep and muddy bank.

He said he grabbed his cellphone and called his wife for help. He didn’t want her to call 911 but she did anyway.

“We got a call about a swift water rescue. We arrived on scene and our biggest challenge was locating him in the creek. When we did locate him was with three dogs. He had gone in the water to rescue a couple of his dogs that had gotten into the water and ended up sliding in the water himself. The banks were too steep. They were too muddy and he couldn’t get out,” said Battalion Chief Jason Hockett with the McKinney Fire Department.

Even though the water was moving pretty fast, Allford said he was never worried about his own safety. He was more concerned about his dogs, especially Romo.

“They had been in the water for a while and they were getting very tired. There was one, in particular, that was an older dog and he was very tired,” Hockett said.

Firefighter put life preservers on Allford and the dog and set up a rope system to pull them to safety. They were a little cold but not hurt.

And what about the third dog that didn’t jump in the water? Allford said he is ironically named Lucky.

Chief Hockett said even though there aren’t many water rescues in McKinney, his firefighters train for them on a regular basis. They had just trained in the creek two days prior.