Wires fall on car during storm, woman electrocuted after exiting vehicle

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Josh Einiger reports from Fanwood.

A woman was killed after severe weather packed with strong winds moved through the Tri-State area Monday, causing damage and power outages across the region.

The scene is finally safe and the storm is long gone, but 12-year-old Camilla Chacha and her mother Eliveria Delgadillo will never forget the horrific scene they witnessed in Fanwood. She told her mom they had to come back and light a candle.

They didn't know what else to do after they watched a 26-year-old woman die a horrible death, and there was no way to help her.

"And we couldn't do anything, we couldn't even back up or anything" Chacha said. "So we just had to look at her."

"So sorry, I can't help her, I can't help," Delgadillo said. "When she was outside, I push my car, I don't know. I'm sorry. It's terrible."

As a line of storms passed through Fanwood, they were riding behind a white car when a tree around the corner knocked loose power lines, which landed on the car. They released so much power into the pavement, it melted the asphalt.

Here's a wider look at the scene:


Cops believe the driver panicked and escaped through her passenger door, without realizing the ground was energized. She was electrocuted as soon as she touched the ground.

Arriving first responders could do nothing to help, as they waited for utility crews to turn off the power.

"It's very frustrating that you want to help someone but you can't because of the situation right there," Fanwood police Chief Richard Trigo said. "It's very, it hurts a lot."

"I've never seen something like this, but I will never forget it," witness Gary Gurzo said. "It will always be a lesson for me, what to do in a terrible situation like this."

Unless your car is on fire, safety experts preach that if it touches live wires, you're safest when you stay put and wait for help. As for the victim, Camila and her mom want her family to know that she didn't die alone.

"We felt really bad," Chacha said. "We just saw everything. We just felt like she was part of our family. We just wanted to bring something for her."

"Maybe she has kids, and they are alone right now," Delgadillo said.

The winds knocked down trees in the Bulls Head neighborhood on Staten Island:

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weathersevere weathertree fallNew York City
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