Investigators with the Florida Highway Patrol are still searching for reasons behind a 66-year-old woman’s car accident this past Tuesday in Orlando. The information compiled so far is scant, although it does paint a redeeming portrait of humanity in the guise of the unnamed civilians who saved the woman’s life.
According to the report, the woman, named Usha Persuad, was driving her SUV at around 11:00 in the morning near Innovation Way and Alafaya Trail in Orlando. While passing by a retention pond, Persuad suffered what is being called a medical episode (more specific information regarding the episode has yet to be released to the general public). Losing control of her vehicle, Persuad drove over the center median of the highway, across numerous lanes of traffic, and straight into the pond.
The suddenness of the crash combined with the difficulty of accessing the car once it began to sink into the pond made it highly unlikely that Persuad would be rescued; however that is where numerous other drivers come in. After being narrowly missed by Persuad’s swerving vehicle, several drivers stopped their cars and rushed to the pond where Persuad was sinking along with her SUV. With little thought to their own safety, these witnesses leapt into the pond and swam to the car.
Whether through using nearby objects or simply the bluntness of their elbows, the witnesses-turned-saviors smashed the window of the woman’s car and lifted the dazed Persuad out of the vehicle as it the water swallowed it from beneath them. Only moments after pulling the woman to safety, the car was completely submerged in the retention pond.
Emergency response crews arrived at the scene shortly afterwards. After making a cursory examination of Persuad, the ambulance team transported her to Florida Hospital East. When admitted, it was stated that she was suffering from minor injuries.
Although no one else received injuries as a result of this accident, it is likely that the Florida Highway Patrol will initiate an examination into the circumstances that caused Persuad to lose control of her vehicle in the first place. While it is a highly fortunate that she managed to avoid all other traffic on her way from the Orlando roadway to the pond, it is a testament to the possibility for human greatness that certain individuals stopped and put their own well being at risk in their successful attempt to rescue the woman.
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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