Body recovered from vehicle submerged in Richmond River – South Ballina

Police have retrieved the body of a teenage driver whose car plunged into the Richmond River yesterday.

Emergency services were called to River Drive, South Ballina, about 11.45am yesterday (Tuesday 7 July 2020), following reports a silver Mazda 2 had left the road and driven into the Richmond River.

A 17-year-old female front-seat passenger was able to escape from the vehicle; however, the 17-year-old female driver remained trapped inside.

Officers from Richmond Police District, Marine Area Command, PolAir, police divers, SES, NSW Ambulance, NSW Maritime, Marine Rescue and NSW Surf Life Saving were all at the scene, working to locate and recover the driver and the vehicle.

Three members of the public along with three police officers – one sergeant and two senior constables – jumped into the water in an attempt to search for the driver and the vehicle.

About 5.30pm, police divers arrived and retrieved the body of the teenage girl from the vehicle, which had been located six-metres underwater.

The vehicle was recovered a short time later; and has been towed for mechanical examination.

A report will be prepared for the information of the Coroner.

As police continue to investigate the circumstances leading up to the crash, detectives are urging any witnesses to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

The three civilians and three officers who all jumped in the water will be considered for formal recognition.

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