Апреля 21, 2018


Father, daughter found in submerged vehicle in Mendocino County's Eel River

17 Апреля 2018, 04:13 | Taylor George

Vehicle, bodies of missing Calif. family members who vanished after road trip from Portland recovered

Father, daughter found in submerged vehicle in Mendocino County's Eel River

Search teams found and identified family members who disappeared more than a week ago while on a road trip from OR to California.

The body of 12-year-old Siddhant Thottapilly was found Monday afternoon about 6 miles north of where the family's Honda Pilot plunged into the south fork of the Eel River on April 6 amid heavy rains, according to the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office.

"Searchers subsequently recovered the bodies of Sandeep Thottapilly and Saachi Thottapilly from inside the vehicle", the Sheriff Office said adding that the autopsies are expected to be performed this week as part of the coroners investigation into the incident. A third body recovered last week was also linked to the family. The authorities on Sunday recovered two bodies belonging to a family who disappeared during a road trip this month. A poster shared by friends and relatives on social media suggested that the SUV matched the Thottapilly family's vehicle.

The force of the river caused a lot of damage to the vehicle and windows to break, said Bartley, theorizing that Soumya Thottapilly was likely shaken loose from the force of the water, and floated away in the rapid river.

The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office said Monday that a boating team searching the Eel River noticed the fuel odor about half a mile (1 kilometer) downstream from where the crash was reported.

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The vehicle was encased in sediment and visibility was poor but divers believed there was at least one body inside, officials said. This provided searchers the ability to conduct a visual inspection of the inside of the vehicle.

Dozens of searchers had been combing the river with Jet Skis, boats and kayaks, along with dive teams.

Recovery efforts continued for several hours and at approximately 6:30 PM the vehicle was partially removed from the Eel River by use of a tow truck. The family was last heard from in the town of Klamath, Del Norte County, on April 5.

The family was believed to be vacationing when they were reported missing last week.

Before the family was known to be missing, authorities in Mendocino County received reports that a vehicle southbound on USA 101 went off the highway and tumbled into the Eel River.

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