PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A woman did not survive after her SUV plummeted 70 feet from a bridge and into the Ohio River near Brunot Island on Thursday afternoon.
The search for the vehicle began around 2 p.m. in the area of Beaver Avenue near the Three Rivers Trail.
River Rescue and the Coast Guard rushed to the spot where the SUV plunged off the railroad bridge and into the water.
The vehicle was found at the bottom of the river, which is about 20-feet deep.
“The visibility is less than two-feet underneath, so it’s all done by feel. Eventually, we did find the vehicle; it was upside down. The woman was somewhat trapped inside,” said Pittsburgh River Rescue Chief Raymond Everitt.
Officials say they had to break a window to get to the body. The woman still had her seatbelt on. She has not yet been identified.
A cat, believed to be from the vehicle, escaped and was swimming. The animal was rescued and is being treated.
As for how the driver got on the bridge, investigators say they just don’t know. They are working to determine if it was an accident.
“Norfolk Southern, they’ve been very helpful, as well as the crew from the ferry. They’ve been very helpful in both the rescue attempt and the investigation,” said Pittsburgh Public Safety Director Wendell Hissrich.