'Fortunate to be alive': Woman recounts harrowing rescue in I-35 rollover crash

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A Centerville, Minnesota woman lost control of her car, ended up in a ditch of standing water earlier this month. Thanks to two state troopers, she's able to share her story.

Still sporting the bruises from her close call with death last week, Allyson Andert has just gotten her voice back to talk about her harrowing experience.

"I'm very fortunate to be alive and very fortunate that they didn't view me as a lost cause," said Andert.

Andert says she was driving home from a friend's house last Wednesday night when the pickup truck she was driving hit a patch of standing water on I-35 near Forest Lake, flipped and landed on its roof in a ditch with three feet of water. Andert says she was hanging upside down as water crept into the cab. She remembers frantically trying to undo her seatbelt, so she wouldn't drown, before losing consciousness.

"All the thoughts going through my head was, ‘Oh my God I'm going to die,’” said Andert. “I said, ‘I can't let myself die. I can't let my mom get that call that her oldest daughter and first child has died.’ I said, ‘No, I need to fight. I'm not going to die. My mom is not going to get that call.’"

Traffic camera video shows a pair of state troopers and good Samaritans respond to Andert’s flipped truck. They cut Andert's seatbelt and pulled her out of the pickup through her broken driver's side window. They had to perform CPR on her not once, but twice to get her breathing again. Crews later took her to a hospital.

"I wanted to call my mom and tell her, ‘Mom I'm alive. It’s not my fault. I made it,’” said Andert.

She says if it weren't for the state troopers and good Samaritans, she wouldn't have survived at all.

"I'm very grateful, grateful, thankful and blessed,” she said. “They were there for me and somebody saw it. If no one had seen it, I probably wouldn't be here to tell my story and say thank you."

Andert says she plans to meet the state troopers who saved her life. She says she'll head back to school right away, but it could be awhile before she's ready to go back to work.