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Two OK After Vehicle Plunges into Icy White River

Washington State Patrol credits the use of seatbelts, as well as the quick action of good Samaritans, for giving this accident a happy ending.

Two people from Silverdale suffered only minor injuries Friday after their vehicle left State Route 410 while enroute to Crystal Mountain and plunged into the White River.

The 48-year-old driver of a 1998 four-wheel drive Toyota 4 Runner had reportedly lost control on the ice as he attempted to pass a slower vehicle, leaving the roadway and careening end over end down a rocky ledge, according to the Washington State Patrol.

The Toyota landing upside down with the windows under the water of the snow and ice covered White River with both the driver and his 19-year-old passenger stuck inside.

Witnesses acted fast to extricate them using crowbars to pry the jammed doors open. Both were only very slightly injured thanks to their seatbelts and were able to get out of the river on their own as soon as the jammed doors were opened. They were seen by fire personnel and released at the scene with minor injuries.  

The driver was cited for speed too fast for the icy conditions with a penalty of $175.

In a release Monday, State Patrol also acknowledged the witnesses who were quick to help:

The Washington State Patrol wishes to thank the unknown good Samaritans (who left the scene prior to our arrival) for their assistance and hopes to remind all drivers that as ever changing weather is again coming to our region to wear your seatbelt, slow down, increase following distances, and that driving a four or all wheel drive vehicle gives no greater advantage on ice.

Drive smart, Drive save, Arrive alive.

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