California Highway Patrol (CHP) reported that a car heading to Turlock Lake rolled over into a Turlock Irrigation District (TID) canal, killing a 1 year old girl and injuring her parents, this afternoon.
According to a CHP spokesperson, a 1 year old girl was killed, while her mother and father suffered major injuries.
CHP is not yet identifying the mother of the child but stated that she was driving a1992-95 Honda Civic on Lake Road east of Hawkins Road, heading to Turlock Lake at about 12:30pm.
The mother was driving at a speed of approximately 50 to 60 mph when she lost control of the car for an unknown reason, turning left and then right, rolling the car over into the canal. The car became submerged in the TID canal.
Dennis Coyle, of Ceres, stated that he was one of a few bystanders who immediately helped with the extraction of the people in the submerged vehicle.
“I arrived on scene just as the car submerged in the canal,” said Coyle. “I jumped in and assisted about 3 others who were in the water.”
“We attempted to open the doors on the vehicle but were unable to open them due to the top being crushed from rolling before hitting the water.”
Coyle explained that they then secured a chain to one of the wheels to attempt to pull the car up to more shallow water and stabilize it.
After it was pulled up, another person pulled the 1 year old girl from the back seat as Coyle pulled the woman out of the driver side window, after someone helped him cut her seat belt.
“After we got them to the levy, I started chest compressions on the woman while another person gave rescue breaths,” explained Coyle. “Two others performed CPR on the baby until we were relieved by EMT personnel who arrived on scene.”
The mother suffered major injuries and was taken to a Modesto hospital while the child was pronounced dead at a hospital in Oakdale.
CHP identified the father, who suffered major injuries and was flown to a hospital in Modesto, as 22 year old Paul Seutter, of Modesto.
“A lot of good people stopped and gave assistance,” Coyle. “It was a group effort for sure. Just wish it had a better ending.”