Officers are stunned that a Carlsbad woman who crashed 300 feet down an embankment and lived on the rock floor below for five days is still alive.
59-year-old Veronica F. Raggilokey's husband reported her missing on July 8. Days later, a traveling family stopped off on highway 166 in Santa Maria to walk and water their dogs. One of them happened to walk to the edge of the embankment and noticed the totaled car.
"She had a blanket, a flashlight and a couple of water bottles, but she did sustain herself by filling the water bottles with the river water," said CHP officer Reggie Julius.
The travelers helped Veronica F. Raggilokey, 59, up to the road and called for help. Officers say it's a chance encounter that never should have happened.
“I've never witnessed, experienced, or heard of anything remotely close to this,” said Julius. “You physically have to get out of your vehicle, out of your car and walk down to the embankment and look down and even in some areas of that embankment in looking over the edge still wouldn't have been able to see the vehicle.”
Raggilokey did have a cell phone, but that area is a dead spot. She had also honked her horn so much trying to get attention that the car battery died.
Officers are investigating the cause of the crash. Raggilokey has no memory of the incident. She suffered scrapes and bruises but is expected to be just fine.