Search suspended for Ashdown woman in Red River due to wintry we - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Search suspended for Ashdown woman in Red River due to wintry weather

Posted: Updated: Feb 25, 2014 05:37 AM
MISSING: 43-year-old Janis Burris Northcross. (Source: Burris family) MISSING: 43-year-old Janis Burris Northcross. (Source: Burris family)
51-year-old Ricky Norwood survived the 50-foot leap into the chilly waters of the Red River, and is now recovering at CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital in Texarkana. 51-year-old Ricky Norwood survived the 50-foot leap into the chilly waters of the Red River, and is now recovering at CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital in Texarkana.
Search efforts got underway on Saturday but have been halted each day since Monday due to wintry weather. Search efforts got underway on Saturday but have been halted each day since Monday due to wintry weather.
Water temperatures in the Red River are in the upper 30s. Water temperatures in the Red River are in the upper 30s.
  • More newsMore>>

  • Australia, Netherlands start to secure crash site

    Australia, Netherlands start to secure crash site

    Friday, July 25 2014 9:44 AM EDT2014-07-25 13:44:41 GMT
    The Ukrainian army has reported rebel attacks overnight throughout the restive east, claiming that at one border crossing the rebels were supported by artillery fire from the Russian side.More >>
    A small group of Dutch and Australian investigators walked the sprawling, unsecured site where Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 went down as their governments prepared police detachments that will try to protect the crash area...More >>
  • Officials: 3 Palestinians killed in West Bank

    Officials: 3 Palestinians killed in West Bank

    Friday, July 25 2014 9:44 AM EDT2014-07-25 13:44:13 GMT
    An Israeli defense official says the Security Cabinet is meeting to discuss international cease-fire efforts, but also the option of expanding its eight-day-old ground operation in Gaza.More >>
    Palestinian hospital officials say three Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank, which has become increasingly restive because of a war between Israel and Hamas militants next door in the Gaza Strip.More >>
  • Deal still elusive for Gaza cease-fire

    Deal still elusive for Gaza cease-fire

    Friday, July 25 2014 9:30 AM EDT2014-07-25 13:30:58 GMT
    Turbulent negotiations to broker a temporary truce in the Gaza Strip are continuing against the backdrop of fresh Israeli attacks on Palestinian militants.More >>
    Turbulent negotiations to broker a temporary truce in the Gaza Strip are continuing against the backdrop of fresh Israeli attacks on Palestinian militants.More >>
FULTON, AR (KSLA) -

The search for an Ashdown woman believed to have jumped or fallen into the Red River to avoid an accident has been suspended until Thursday due to threat of winter weather expected Wednesday.

Search crews resumed the search for 43-year-old Janis Burris-Northcross Monday morning but cold weather halted the search. Temperatures have remained within a few degrees of 30 since Saturday, with water temperatures in the upper 40s. The search was expected to continue until nightfall on Monday, but Hempstead County Sheriff James Singleton says weather conditions forced them to suspend the search earlier.

Officials say they will have to wait until the weather improves on Thursday to resume the search. Aside from the discovery of some personal items, there has been no sign of her.

Police say it all started around 2 a.m. Saturday with a wreck on the Red River bridge involving 3 vehicles due to icy conditions. Northcross was 1 of the 3 people who found themselves in the path of a skidding 18-wheeler on the bridge. Northcross either jumped or was knocked off of the bridge by the impact. Her sister, Catherine Burris, managed to stay on the bridge and survived, suffering minor injuries. 

51-year-old Ricky Norwood jumped from the bridge to avoid being hit by the jackknifing 18-wheeler, making the 50-foot leap into the chilly waters of the Red River. Norwood is now recovering at CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital in Texarkana, with broken ribs and a punctured lung.

Norwood says the impact knocked all of his clothes off except for his underwear and socks. "It was so far down there I closed my eyes when I hit the water I didn't know I hit the water until I open my eyes and I was underneath the water. I prayed to the Lord, 'Please let me make it over here,' and I made it to the bank."

Norwood recalls hearing Northcross calling for help, however, after she hit the water. "One time she said,"Help!" but I couldn't get out there." 

Authorities believe Northcross also leapt in that terrifying moment. While Norwood says he didn't see if she leapt or was knocked off the bridge, her family insists she did not jump willingly. 

Copyright 2014 KSLA. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow