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    Posted June 22, 2012 by
    duluth, Minnesota
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Your best 2012 weather photo

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    Duluth zoo seal flooded out


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     This iReporter works at an assisted living facility, and was worried about the seal after finding it early in the morning Wednesday. Several zoo animals died but this seal and another that washed away are reportedly doing fine.
    - hhanks, CNN iReport producer

    I got off work at 11:15 pm, I went to visit a friend that was home alone due to her family out of town, and as we were visiting next thing I know, it was almost 2 am. I left her house ( which she lives right off midway rd and hwy 2) headed down highway 2 twords Proctor, Mn but half way to Proctor I was stopped from fire crews blocking the road due to the roads covered with water. Water so high that cars on the main road running through Proctor were submerged in water up to the roofs, So I had to turn around and take Morris Thomas rd and down Stebner rd that lead me to Grand ave.

    As I was driving, approaching the Lake Superior Zoo area, I witnessed an on coming car turn on their hazard lights. I immediately I thought to myself " oh they must have got stuck in a puddle." The rain was very tough that night and there were many pockets of standing water just collecting on Grand ave. So I started to slow down as I was approaching the other car being careful, and as I got closer I seen something flopping up and down in front of the other cars head lights. I thought to myself " oh, someone hit an eagle or some large bird " the way it was going up and down I knew it couldn't be a deer or a dog.

    When I noticed it was a seal, I was beside myself. I immediately pulled my car at a slight angle to block the seal safely from any traffic, and also turned on my hazard lights. I hollered to the other driver if he has called 911, and I got no response. Not sure if he was un able to hear me due to the noise from the rain coming down.

    So I got on my cell phone and called 911 myself. At this time it was 2:32 am. And as the dispatcher picked up, I was starting to tell them about the seal on Grand Ave, but then a fire crew pulled up. I notified the emergency what was happening and comfirmed that a fire crew was there on scene.

    I got off the phone and jumped out of my car with my phone in my hand. I bent down right next to my car, called out to the seal saying "Hay baby " and that is when I was able to get a wonderful shot of the seal looking right at me. The other driver pulled up next to me and asked if I was going to face book that photo, I replied " I don't know..... maybe?"

    I was just so concerned about the seal and soaking up the experience of this situation. The other driver then drove away, I stayed to help the fire crew with the seal. I just couldn't leave, I kept talking to the seal, trying to lead it to the side of the road and to a much safer place then in the middle of the road.

    The amazing thing is that the seal was moving across Grand Ave heading twords the Lake Superior Zoo as if it just wanted to go home. As the seal made it to a deep pool of water next to the curb on the zoo side, the seal just buried its head in the water and let the water run over its head. I said to the fire crew, "Oh now that feels good!!! How amazing s that!!! " And after I said that, the seal looked at me again.

    I tried to get a picture of the water running over the seals head, but it started to splash in the water like a kid on a play ground. the seal allowed me to walk up next to it, i bent down ad was able to pet it. The duluth police department shortly showed up and they had told me to move my car and get off the road, to head home.

    I was sad to leave the seal, i would of really loved to stay and help, but I understand that the police was only looking out for my safety and well being. I got home, which I live a half a mile away from the zoo, and I woke my husband up and was super excited to tell him what just happened.

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