Girls Die After Car Sinks in Reservoir

The driver, Arlene Hernandez of Chula Vista, has been arrested on suspicion of DUI

By R. Stickney and Diana Guevara
|  Monday, Aug 6, 2012  |  Updated 7:35 AM PDT
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Arlene Hernandez, 22, was driving a Kia Sorento eastbound on Otay Lakes Road around 6 p.m. when she lost control near Wueste Road, veered off the side of the road and into the water, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Arlene Hernandez, 22, was driving a Kia Sorento eastbound on Otay Lakes Road around 6 p.m. when she lost control near Wueste Road, veered off the side of the road and into the water, according to the California Highway Patrol.

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A car veers off the road into Otay Reservoir and flips onto its roof, drowning two children still in the backseat. Now, the driver, a 22-year-old Chula Vista woman, faces charges of driving under the influence.

Arlene Hernandez, 22, was driving a Kia Sorento eastbound on Otay Lakes Road around 6 p.m. when she lost control near Wueste Road, veered off the side of the road and into the water, according to the California Highway Patrol.

Hernandez and her 31-year-old male passenger managed to escape the vehicle CHP said.

Two 5-year-old girls who were in the backseat were trapped underwater. The San Diego County medical examiner identified the girls as Giuliana Figueroa of La Mesa and Lesette Silva of Chula Vista.

One girl was the daughter of Hernandez according to CHP officer Albert Udan. The second child was the daughter of the male passenger in the car Udan said.

Witnesses pulled over and ran down the embankment to help. U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents and civilians pulled the girls out of the water.

Two medical helicopters landed at a nearby park to transport the children to Rady Children's Hospital, where they were pronounced dead.

The passenger was being questioned by CHP officers. 

 Ed. Note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly attributed information to San Diego police instead of San Diego Fire Rescue. We regret the error.

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