By Margie Wuebker
A Mendon woman credits a cell phone with bringing rescuers to the scene after her car plunged into Eight Mile Creek on Monday morning.
"My car was under the bridge," Annie Short told The Daily Standard this morning. "I could see traffic but nobody could see me."
The 31-year-old Short, a resident of 210 S. Main St., was headed to work at Nifty 50's Cafe and Schleeter's Auction near St. Marys when the 10:20 a.m. accident occurred.
Short was driving southbound on Neptune-Mendon Road, 50 feet south of Burd Road, when she failed to negotiate a curve, according to Mercer County Sheriff's Office reports. The vehicle traveled off the west side of the road as she applied the brakes. It struck two bushes and continued down the embankment before landing beneath the bridge in 11ò2 to 2 feet of water.
She reached for the cell phone and called 911, reporting her location along Neptune-Mendon Road in the vicinity of some S-shaped curves, a church, a bridge and an orchard. A dispatcher inquired about the water depth which had reached the seats but showed no indication of going higher. Short complained of neck pain and was urged to stay as quiet as possible until rescue personnel arrived.
"I can hear the sirens coming," she later told the dispatcher. "They are almost here."
Short had called co-workers minutes before the crash to report she was en route. When she failed to arrive in timely fashion, they set out to find out what happened.
"They showed up just as my car (a 1997 Saturn) was being pulled from the water," she said. "I'm sure it looked real bad to them at the time."
Short was taken to Mercer County Community Hospital in Coldwater, where she was treated for exposure and released after five hours.
"I have some bumps and bruises but I was fortunate," she said. "I could have been down there in the water a lot longer without my cell phone."