Bay County mother and daughter die after car plunges into Saginaw River

Both victims were unconscious when pulled from the car and icy water
Published: Nov. 30, 2020 at 9:42 PM EST
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) -An 81-year-old woman and her 52-year-old daughter have died after being pulled from their car after it plunged into the Saginaw River Monday afternoon.

Police have identified the victims as Janet and Nicholette Korpal from Bay County.

Bay City Department of Public Safety responded after someone saw the vehicle drive into the Saginaw River from a parking lot near Bigelow Park.

Police say the mother and daughter remained in the car as it floated then became submerged.

Rescue workers were able to pull them from the vehicle, but both were unconscious when taken the McLaren Bay Region. Both were in critical condition initially, then pronounced dead at the hospital.

The Bay County Sheriff’s Department, Coast Guard, DNR, Michigan State Police, Essexville Department of Public Safety, Medstar Ambulance Service, and the Bangor Township Fire Department assisted at the scene. An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death and this incident remains under investigation.

***UPDATE 12/29/20: According to the Bay City Department of Public Safety, the investigation is closed on their end. The Bay County Prosecutor’s Office is reviewing the report as a matter of procedure. They said it appears the car went into the river after the driver may have accidentally used the gas pedal instead of the brake while parking. There is nothing definitive to indicate it was intentional. No evidence was discovered from the vehicle.

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