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‘An Absolute Miracle’: Adults and Two Young Children Survive After Tesla Plunges Off 250-Foot Cliff

The most wonderful time of the year often necessitates a lot of driving — to parties, family reunions, last-minute grocery runs, and all manner of Christmas and New Year’s activities. It’s a busy time on the road, and drives that are already dangerous are often even more perilous than usual thanks to increased traffic or inclement weather. It’s unclear just yet what caused a horrific crash for one group driving along the Pacific Coast Highway in Northern California in a section known as the “Devil’s Slide” on Monday morning, but it’s a miracle they survived. Two adults and two children, ages 9 and 4, were in the Tesla sedan when it went off the road in a spot that doesn’t have a guardrail. The car then plummeted around 250 down the cliffside, potentially flipping multiple times before landing right-side-up on the rocks, wedged against the cliff. When rescue teams were called at around 10:15 a.m., they had little hope that any of the passengers were alive. The Devil’s Slide is notorious for taking lives, and the firefighters who responded assumed the people inside were dead, Battalion Chief Brian Pottenger with the Coastside Fire Protection District Cal/Fire told the Associated Press, according to KKTV. “We go there all the time for cars over the cliff and they never live,” Pottenger said. “This was an absolute miracle. “I don’t even like driving it. It’s definitely a treacherous stretch of California.” When firefighters using binoculars to oversee the recovery noticed movement, the mood changed and the jaws of life were brought out. “Every one of us was shocked when we saw movement out of the front windshield,” Pottenger said. The California Highway Patrol Golden Gate Division Air Operations posted a video of the helicopter rescue, showing just how dramatic the situation was. “This morning, CHP H-30 responded with multiple fire agencies from San Mateo County, CAL FIRE CZU San Mateo-Santa Cruz Unit, American Medical Response – San Mateo County, CHP – San Francisco, the United States Coast Guard and the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office to a report of a ‘vehicle over the cliff’ at Devils Slide,” their post read. “As first responders arrived at the scene, it was determined that 2 adults and 2 children were trapped in a Tesla. While H-30 responded, firefighters rappelled to the scene and rescued the two children. “CHP H-30 lowered a El Cerrito Fire Helicopter Rescue Technician (HRT) to the scene who assisted in the extrication and rescue of two adults.” The two children suffered musculoskeletal injuries, but were in shockingly good condition. “They were more scared than they were hurt,” Pottenger said. Pottenger told NBC that both children were in car seats. He added, “The car seats actually did their job. Amazingly, they stayed in place. They were intact, and there was no damage to them.” The adults did not fare as well as the children and were rushed to the hospital with “traumatic” injuries. At the time, their relationship to the children was not confirmed. California Highway Patrol San Francisco is investigating the incident, but so far it appears that the Tesla was not on Autopilot or Full Self-Driving Mode and road conditions were not at fault either. “The car traveled off the main portion of the roadway,” Officer Mark Andrews with the CHP said. “For what reason, we don’t know.” This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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