News

Sequim woman dies after driving van off cliff

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Sheriff’s deputy says no indication she tried to stop

by AMANDA WINTERS
Sequim Gazette


A 66-year-old Sequim woman died Thursday after her vehicle plunged from a 30-foot cliff into Dungeness Bay.

Clallam County Sheriff Chief Criminal Deputy Ron Cameron said Barbara Neil was driving north on Cays Road at a high speed around 10 a.m. when she drove off the road and over the edge of a cliff.
Cays Road meets with Marine Drive at a 90-degree corner, Cameron said.

“It doesn’t take a genius to see she left the roadway at a high rate of speed,” he said. “There was no indication she braked.”

Cameron said Neil lived nearby.

Her white van landed upright a good distance from shore, he said.

Cameron said a fisherman told him he heard an engine rev and saw the white van fly through the air before landing in the water. The man helped rescuers get to the van using his boat, Cameron said.
Another boat, tied up on shore, was used to rescue Neil, he said.

Rescuers found her in critical condition and at one point had to perform CPR, Fire District 3 Assistant Chief Roger Moeder said.

Cars lined up along Marine Drive and Cays Road as rescuers brought Neil to shore and up a flight of stairs on a gurney.

A Coast Guard helicopter from the Port Angeles base landed in a nearby yard and airlifted Neil to Olympic Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead, Cameron said.

Clallam County Fire District 3, Clallam County Sheriff’s Office, Border Patrol, Coast Guard and State Patrol all responded to the scene. The State Patrol is assisting deputies with the investigation.
Reach Amanda Winters at awinters@sequimgazette.com.


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