Reports of a stolen ambulance from a Utica-based company turned into a lengthy pursuit on the New York State Thruway for state troopers Sunday morning into the afternoon.
WHAM-TV reports that police say they caught the vehicle on the Thruway and later on I-490 and into the city of Rochester. The chase lasted about 100 miles (160 kilometers) .
Police said they later located the ambulance off of the Culver Road exit, and were led down Seneca Road when the vehicle crashed into Irondequoit Bay near Newport Yacht Club.
“It was surreal to see somebody come flying through, crashing through our gate and go into the water,” Bob Henry, who serves on the board of directors for the club, told the TV station.
David Drushler was making a delivery at the yacht club and witnessed the incident. He said the woman rolled the window down to get out and was trying to get on top of the ambulance to hold something. “People on the power boats around were yelling, ‘She’s drowning. She can’t swim.’ That’s when the power boats came down and fished her out,” Drushler said.
Members of the Monroe County Sheriff’s scuba team helped locate the vehicle sunken below, not far from the docks. Crews spent more than an hour pulling the ambulance out of the water.
Police said the unidentified woman driver would not comply as they attempted to pull the vehicle over several times.
A spokesperson from Kunkel Ambulance said the vehicle was stolen during a post-shift cleaning and tracked using a GPS.
The woman was immediately taken into custody and charges are pending.