Reporting Derek Valcourt
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The Bay Bridge is now back to normal after a bizarre accident sends one car hurdling into the bay. Amazingly, that driver survived.
Derek Valcourt has details on the crash.
That driver was just 22 years old. Somehow, she was able to swim herself to safety after her car plummeted into the water.
Morgan Jade Lake, 22, or Sunderland, Maryland is alive and well after her 2007 Chrysler Sebring went over the side of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, falling 40 feet to the water below.
“This lady was very lucky,” said Battalion Chief Steve Thompson, Anne Arundel County Fire Department.
It happened about 8:25 p.m. Friday about a quarter mile into the eastbound span of the bridge after an accident involving her car, a tractor trailer from Canada and another car.
The truck struck Lake’s car, which then hit the bridge wall, rode up the wall and over into the eight foot deep water. Lake escaped the sinking car and swam about 30 feet.
“She was sitting on the stone of one of the pilings of the bridge,” Thompson said. “She was actually conscious and alert and there was a boater that stopped. And he was actually on the rocks with her. He was keeping her calm.”
Lake suffered injuries to her arm, shoulder and leg, but she’s already been released from Shock Trauma.
No one else was injured, but traffic backed up for miles. Many drivers were stuck waiting hours Friday night for the bridge to reopen.
It’s a bridge with a long history of deadly crashes and close calls. In May of 2007, three people died in a seven car crash after a trailer being towed by an SUV came unhitched.
In 2008, truck driver John Short died when his tractor careened over the bridge and into the water. He had swerved to avoid a head-on collision and his truck broke through the Jersey walls.
Harry Blauvelt, 70, fell to his death in 2011 after he stepped out of his disabled car, which was then struck by a truck.
And strong winds toppled a trailer, nearly sending it over the edge earlier this year.
Inspectors say, despite this most recent accident, there was no structural damage to the bridge.
The accident remains under investigation.