Rob Malcolm reporting


SOUTH LAKE TAHOE (CBS13) — A woman who was saved after being buried alive in a car earlier this month serves as a lesson to be smart and safe as winter storms continue to move through.

South Lake Tahoe public works director Ray Jarvis said a snowplow worker bumped into the car under a pile of snow and immediately got help.

On Sunday, Feb. 17, a 48-year-old homeless woman wandered from a casino and decided to sleep in a friends car. It was a decision that almost cost her her life it was not for that snowplow.

“We are very fortunate we bumped into this car. It could have turned out quite differently we’re glad that it did not,” Jarvis said.

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The woman sleeping her friend’s car was completely buried in a berm on Cedar Avenue. Once she was discovered everyone went to work to quickly get her out.

“They wanted to get to the driver door, so the plow operator used the front blade on the grater and pushed snow away from the driver’s side of the car. The Public Works Department and police grabbed shovels and began digging out the driver,” said Lt. David Stevenson with the South Lake Tahoe Police.

The woman was fine and lucky to be alive. This rescue is a reminder that in South Lake Tahoe illegally parked cars could have deadly consequences.

“When we send out these releases about parking your car in certain rural areas and it’s dangerous, this is exactly the type of thing we’re talking about,” Chris Fiore with the City of South Lake Tahoe said.

The woman said she was trapped for up to five hours.

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