Bogalusa woman, three children saved from submerged car - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Bogalusa woman, three children saved from submerged car

State police sent this photo of the scene of the crash State police sent this photo of the scene of the crash

FOX 8 News received this press release from the Louisiana State Police Thursday evening:

A Bogalusa mother and her three children are safe and without injury due to the heroic actions of several passing motorists following a non-contact hit and run crash on the evening of Saturday, January 12, 2013.

The crash occurred shortly before 7:30 pm as a 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix, driven by Mary Woodward (37 of Covington, LA), was traveling south on LA 21 in the right lane of travel. Woodward's children, ages eleven, nine, and seven, were seated in the two rear seats and front passenger seat of the vehicle. As the Pontiac continued southbound, an unknown black sedan approached at a high rate of speed from behind. Upon approaching slower moving traffic, the black sedan attempted pass several vehicles and subsequently forced the Pontiac to run off road to the right as it recklessly swerved into Woodward's lane. As the Pontiac left the paved roadway, it drove onto the flooded river embankment at the base of the Bogue Chitto River Bridge on LA 21.

Immediately after entering the floodwater, the Pontiac became partially submerged trapping all four occupants in the vehicle. Passing motorists, James Garner and his fiancée, Sue Ann Barkman both of Bush, LA, witnessed the crash events and instinctively ran into the floodwaters to render assistance. Despite the dangerously rising water level, Garner and Barkman successfully rescued Woodward and all three children from the submerged vehicle. Assisting in the rescue were also several other unidentified Good Samaritans.

Earlier this afternoon, divers from the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff's Office were able to attach cables to the Pontiac allowing it to be successfully removed from the flooded riverbank.

Troopers are actively searching for the unknown black sedan and urge anyone with information to contact Troop L at 985-893-6250.

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