|RAW Video: Man found in submerged car dies|
Emergency personnel perform CPR on a man who was involved in a single-vehicle rollover accident Wednesday, November 14, 2012 near Moroni and South Tarke roads in Sutter County. The 74-year-old Yuba City man died at the scene, according to the CHP.
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Yuba City man pulled from canal dies
A Yuba City man died today after his body was pulled from a partially submerged vehicle in drainage ditch east of Meridian.
Two farmworkers discovered the overturned red 1991 Honda Accord around 9:50 a.m. in a ditch south of Moroni Road. Rodney Dunn and Damon Oliver found the victim, 74-year-old Adrian Romero, unconscious and alone inside. They struggled pulling the man up the steep embankment before administering CPR.
“You could hear the water gurgling in his lungs,” Dunn said later.
Paramedics and firefighters tried to revive the victim without success. Romero never regained consciousness and was pronounced dead at the scene.
California Highway Patrol investigators are still looking into the cause of the crash.
“It is unknown at this time if a medical condition played a part in the collision or if drugs (or) alcohol were a contributing factor,” the CHP said in a press release.
It appeared the Honda slid down a 10-foot embankment and overturned in the water, the CHP said.
Romero was not wearing a seat belt, the CHP said.
It was not clear how long the vehicle had been in the water.
Heavy bleeding was seen coming from Romero's head and face.
Oliver said it appeared the victim was on his way to work at an adjoining farm.
“He had a lunch pail, a rake and some other tools in there,” Oliver said.
Santiago Ramirez, another farm worker, said fishing is common along the canal and at nearby Long Lake and the road is frequently traveled.
“Every day a lot of people come up and down here,” Ramirez said.
Dunn and Oliver spotted the vehicle while working and stopped to investigate.
“We saw the car and didn’t know if it was dumped there, but it looked fresh,” Dunn explained. “I jumped up on top of it, to look inside and saw him.”
About a dozen firefighters from the Meridian Fire Protection District responded, along with Sutter County firefighters and a Bi-County ambulance crew.
The CHP is investigating the crash. The Sutter County Coroner’s Office is conducting the investigation of the death, authorities said.
CONTACT Rob Parsons at firstname.lastname@example.org or 749-4785. Find him on Facebook at /ADcrimebeat or on Twitter at @ADcrimebeat.