Malaika Muhammad was home alone on Monday night when the flood that killed at least three people struck her neighborhood of South Houston, Texas.
“I was looking outside at the weather in astonishment,” she says, when she noticed a car stopped on the freeway exit ramp near her home.
“When I looked back again the car was flashing its lights and that’s when I realized there was somebody in it,” she tells PEOPLE. As Muhammad watched the water level around the car rise, she noticed someone in the car waving. Then, she says, “I could tell this is someone who really needs help.”
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