Oilfield worker lost in New Mexico flooding dies

AP News
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Posted: Sep 19, 2014 8:01 PM
Oilfield worker lost in New Mexico flooding dies

LAKEWOOD, N.M. (AP) — One oil field worker was killed and 40 more were stranded in flood waters as the remnants of Hurricane Odile moved through southeastern New Mexico on Friday, authorities said.

Eddy County emergency officials told KOB-TV (http://goo.gl/Q66Xc0) that the man was found dead after his vehicle got stuck in water near Loving early Friday. A passenger climbed to safety.

Officials found the missing oilfield worker's body later in the day. His name was not immediately released.

Also Friday, the National Guard said it was working to rescue 40 other oilfield workers stranded on a county road near Artesia.

Flooding also forced the evacuation an RV park in Eddy County.

Residents fled Lakewood's SKP Ranch RV Park early Friday after its evaporation pond flooded and the park's emergency sirens sounded, the Artesia Daily Press reported (http://goo.gl/eD9bNY)

The high waters engulfed vehicles and closed a number of roads.

"If we didn't get out when we did, we would have had to be evacuated by helicopters," park resident Robert Nyman said. Nyman was one of the residents airlifted out of a similar flood last year.

Gov. Susana Martinez visited the evacuees at a temporary shelter set up at the Eddy County fairgrounds. "We will be in constant contact with the emergency operations center to say, 'Give these people a break,' " Martinez said.

Severe weather also flooded the entrance to Carlsbad Caverns National Park, closing the park for a second day on Friday.