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Driver Dies After Driving Off Martinez Pier, Despite Heroic Rescue Efforts

MARTINEZ (CBS SF) – Despite a three-hour effort to rescue her and her vehicle, a woman died after driving off a pier into the Martinez Marina Thursday night.

At around 11:45 p.m., the Contra Costa County Fire Department received reports of a car that crashed into the Carquinez Strait, in the Martinez Marina.

A diver with the Contra Costa County Fire Department dove into the freezing water to tie a rope around the vehicle so a tow truck could pull it from the marina, according to Contra Costa Fire Battalion Chief Vito Impastato. First responders worked as quickly as possible as the tide was coming in.

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Car sitting Martinez Marina after driving off pier. (Craig Cannon/KPIX)

After removing the vehicle from the water, responders discovered the victim sitting in the driver's seat. While the rain and fog impeding vision could've been responsible for the accident, Impastato said it was unclear what caused the driver to drive off the pier.

First responders from the Contra Costa County Fire, the Martinez Police and Pittsburg Fire departments all contributed to the rescue efforts, which lasted nearly three hours in the rain.

The victim, possibly a woman, had not been identified by press time. The accident was under investigation.

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