Loudon firefighters put rescue boat to good use

LOUDON, Tenn. (WVLT)- A relatively new piece of lifesaving equipment came to the rescue Thursday night.

Loudon firefighters jumped into action...using the department's rescue boat to pull a man from the Tennessee River a little after 7.

Police and a pastor had talked to the man for a few minutes, before he jumped around 70 feet off the Highway 11 bridge just south of downtown.

Rescuers were in the water just minutes later. They pulled the man...who is believed to be in his fifties...to safety. He was alert and talking before he was taken to U.T. Medical Center.

Interim Fire Chief Travis Gray says the 10 thousand dollars the city paid for the boat was money well spent.

"If we didn't have that boat there's a possibility that someone could have died."