AN 18-month-old toddler was in a “critical but stable” condition in hospital last night after spending 13 hours alone in a car that had crashed into a freezing river in Utah, killing her mother.
The unnamed child survived the night in her car seat alongside her dead mother after the car hit a concrete retaining wall and swerved off the bridge shortly before midnight on Friday.
The car crashed into Utah’s Spanish Fork River where it came to rest partially submerged on an embankment.
A passing angler found the vehicle shortly before midday as he went out to fish and alerted emergency services, who airlifted the girl to a Salt Lake City hospital.
Three police officers and four firefighters who worked on the rescue were treated for hypothermia after attending the scene of the accident 80km south of Salt Lake City.
Police named the mother as Lynn Jennifer Groesbeck, 25, of Springville, Utah who had left for home after visiting her parents in Salem, Utah, shortly after 10pm.
A resident near the bridge said he thought he heard an accident at about 11pm on Friday and went to investigate, but could not find anything.
Officials said it appeared that the baby had been strapped in her car seat and held above the freezing waters.
– The Telegraph