ROGUE RIVER, Ore. — Search and rescue officials say when fishermen arrived at the Robertson Bridge boat ramp this morning, they were greeted by a minivan in the middle of the Rogue River. Unsure if someone is inside, they immediately called for help.
It turns out the van was empty and there are no known injuries. Also unknown is how the van ended up in the river in the first place. Rural Metro firefighters were first on scene once the call went out, and a fisherman took one of the firefighters out on his boat to do an initial search.
Once no one was found to be in danger, it took two tow trucks and a dive team a couple hours to pull the van out of the water. Search and rescue officials say pulling vehicles out of the rogue isn’t uncommon.
They say this is the second in about a month, and at least the fifth in the past two years. Each time it happens, the goal is to remove the vehicle immediately.
Deputy Cory Krauss, Search and Rescue Coordinator explains, “There’s also, obviously, the environmental concerns because you’ve got the vehicle out there with the oil and the gasoline, so we try to expedited getting these vehicles out of the water as quick as we can.”
The license plate number was run through the system and the owner was contacted. The owner lives in the area and officials say the owner reports seeing the car in their driveway last night. The investigation on how the van ended up in the river will continue, but at this point it is unknown if the vehicle was stolen.