The 47-year-old's last desperate distress call, which brought the Southwest Times record to her door, arrived on the morning of August 24 at 4:38 pm Dispatcher, which the Fort Smith Police Department admitted, sounded "partly callous and loveless ".
"I have an emergency – a serious emergency," Stevens told the dispatcher. Could you please help me? "
A startled Stevens told the dispatcher over and over again that she was dying in the fast-rising waters, cried and repeatedly asked when help would arrive, she could not swim, she said, having trouble adjusting her location She did not want to die, she said.
"You're not going to die," said the Dispatcher in Audio, which was released by the police this week, "I do not know why you freak out … If you freak out, you only lose your oxygen. So calm down. "
Stevens said water ran into her car, it would soon ruin her new phone.
" Are you really interested in your brand new phone? "The dispatcher asked." You're over there crying your life. Who's taking care of your phone? "
Stevens said she had not seen the water in the street, but she suddenly came in. She apologized over and over, the water starting to reach her chest, she said They're probably laughing, she said.
"Ma'am, I'm sorry," Stevens shouted.
Stevens once said she had to vomit. [1
Stevens wept uncontrollably and asked the Dispatcher to pray with her.
"You go ahead and start praying, "said the 911 driver.
" Please help and get me out of this water, dear father, "Stevens said.
Again she apologized for being rude, but she was scared.
"So you learn not to go into the water next time," said the dispatcher.
Ste Vens insisted she not see the flood. She has been working on her paper path for 21 years and has never experienced anything like it.
"I do not know how you did not see it, you just had to go over it, the water just did not show up."
About 15 minutes after the call began, the dispatcher answered other calls. The police said many stranded residents called this morning.
Stevens cried on. The dispatcher tried to describe the whereabouts of the stranded woman to the firefighters.
"I phone her," she said. "She's freaking out."
About 18 minutes after the call began, the dispatcher asked a fireman if he could see Stevens SUV. "Negative," he said. There was confusion about their location.
Stevens wept uncontrollably.
"Miss Debbie, you will have to shut up," said the dispatcher. "Can you honk your horn?"
"My horn is dead," Stevens said. "Everything is dead."
The water climbed over the door of their SUV, she said. "Oh, Lord, help me," she called. The dispatcher said saviors were looking for her.
"Oh my god, my car starts to move," Stevens shouted.
"Okay, listen to me, I know," said the dispatcher. "I'm trying to help you … I know you're scared, just wait, because I have to answer other calls."
Stevens starts screaming. She said she could not breathe.
"I'm on the phone with her," the dispatcher told a rescuer. "She's really freaked out."
"I'm going to die," Stevens said.
"Miss Debbie, you're breathing well because you're yelling at me, calm down, I know you're scared, hold on for me."
Stevens is no longer heard.
"Miss Debbie? Miss Debbie?" said the dispatcher. "Oh my god, she seems to be under water now."
The call ended at 5am.
The rescuers reached Stevens' SUV about 58 minutes later. They tried unsuccessfully to revive them.
Fort Smith police issued a statement announcing that they had "made a great deal of restraint" to the audio recording of the call as requested by the media.
"The recording contains the audio of the last moments of a dying person as well as the interaction between her and the 911 driver," the statement says.
"And while the driver's reaction to this extremely tense and dynamic event sounds hardened and sometimes loveless, sincere efforts have been made to find and rescue Mrs. Stevens."
Steven's first call during the emergency was at her Mother-in-law, the police said. She then dialed 911 from her cellphone.
Fort Smith Fire and Police units were flooded with 911 calls from people stranded in floods. Stevens' difficulty in describing her whereabouts and the floods limited the ability of first responders to reach them, the statement said.
"I am heartbroken for this tragic loss of life and my prayers are with Debras family and friends," said Police Chief Danny Baker in a statement.
"All our first responders who have tried to save Mrs. Stevens are dismayed at the outcome, for each of us saving lives is at the heart of who we are and why we do what we do. When we are unsuccessful, it hurts. "
The Stevens family did not respond to several requests from CNN for comments.
Police spokesman Aric Mitchell said the 911 operator has delivered its two-week notice on 9 August tragedy.
"The incident will certainly lead us to look at the guidelines in our existing communications unit, but we have not yet conducted a review to make any specific provisions," Mitchell said.