A snow plow driver for South Lake Tahoe had his normal day interrupted when he struck a buried car. Inside, a woman had been trapped, buried in the car under a pile of snow.
The driver's plow was pushing the snow out of the way, when he bumped into the buried vehicle. Cars being illegally parked and buried under snow is not uncommon, so the driver contacted police to get the car towed.
Once on the scene, the police and driver got to work digging the car out. To their surprise, a woman put her hand on the window, showing she had been inside the whole time.
Tahoe woman found buried alive www.youtube.com
It's amazing she was okay.
The city's communications manager, Chris Fiore, had this to say,
"She wasn't trying to get out. She wasn't making any noise."
He also said she was not cited for any violations at this time.
The police and driver dug the woman out of her car, and found she had been in there for five hours. She had been living in her car, though she seemed unconcerned with what might have happened had the plow not hit her vehicle.
The woman was sleeping in the vehicle before she was discovered. She was offered medical assistance but she declined and left the vehicle to be towed away.
"We say this all the time, but it is so important to get cars out of snow removal areas and for everyone to be careful using vehicles during major snow events,"
"Being inside of a buried car, or starting a car buried in snow could have deadly consequences."
However, people are asking for more details about the situation.
The woman had no cell phone to call for help. Her car's battery was dead so she couldn't roll down the windows.
Fiore ends, saying
"The truth is that this could have turned out very differently."
This incident took place on February 17th, but was reiterated by the city on Tuesday as they prepare for another winter storm.
Ray Jarvis, the Public works director, says,
"One of the biggest issues we've had this winter is illegally parked cars. They don't just delay the snow removal process they're dangerous for everyone involved."