Woman rescued by Westchester County police after car ends up in frigid lake

IRVINGTON, New York (WABC) -- A woman whose car ended up in the frigid waters of a Westchester County lake was rescued by police Tuesday.

The incident began about 9:30 a.m. when County Police received 911 calls reporting that a vehicle had driven into Woodlands Lake at V.E. Macy Park in Irvington.

Officials say Sergeant Jeff Slotoroff swam out to the vehicle, reached in through a partially opened window to unlock the driver's side door and was able to force it open enough to remove the woman from the car.

As he swam back toward shore holding the woman, officials say Captain James Luciano tied a rescue rope around his waist, entered the lake and was able to take over bringing the victim to safety as other officers on land held the rope to stabilize them.

"Sgt. Slotoroff and Captain Luciano put themselves in harm's way to rescue this driver. I commend them for their skillful and courageous actions," Public Safety Commissioner Thomas A. Gleason said.

The woman, who remained conscious during the incident, was taken by ambulance to Westchester Medical Center for treatment. County Police are investigating what caused her car to go into the lake.

County officials say an Ardsley police officer and a woman who was riding her bike in the park also entered the water in the effort to rescue the woman. Gleason thanked them, along with fire and EMS personnel that responded to the scene.

Woodlands Lake, which is fed by the Saw Mill River, is usually about five feet deep, but was likely higher and more turbulent as a result of Monday's significant rainfall.

Members of the County Police Emergency Service Unit also responded and searched the vehicle to ensure no one else was inside it, securing it before it became fully submerged, according to officials.

The vehicle will be removed from the lake Tuesday afternoon.

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