Rescuers: Woman freed herself from submerged car

FAIRHAVEN, MASS. (WPRI) — Fairhaven officials responded to an unusual call early Wednesday morning after a women accidentally drove her car into a marina.

32-year-old Tami Pitter accidentally drove her Nissan Maxima 50 feet off a boat ramp near the New Bedford-Fairhaven bridge around 5:15 a.m.

When crews arrived, they found only her car submerged in the frigid waters.

“The occupant of the vehicle had actually made her way out of the vehicle and was waiting on shore. Police brought her in to the motel to try and keep her warm,” said Wayne Oliveira of the Fairhaven Fire Department.

Investigators believe Pittner was driving west on Bridge Street when she mistook the marina for the road. Crews believe Wednesday’s blizzard-like conditions and Pittner’s unfamiliarity with the area played a role in the accident.

“With the snow and the wind, she just became confused and drove down the ramp. These are the days you really earn your keep. Fortunately, it went over well and she was able to escape without any significant harm,” said Oliveira.

Crews were able to wade out to the sedan and pull it to dry land.

The driver was taken to St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford as a precaution.

The official cause of the accident remains under investigation but police believe it appears to be a case of weather and disorientation.

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