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Diver helps tow truck recover smashed SUV from Bayou LaCroix

A Nissan Pathfinder is pulled from Bayou LaCroix in Bay St. Louis on Saturday after its driver crashed through the concrete guard rail and into the water. Northbound lanes of Mississippi 603 were blocked for more than an hour as crews worked to get the SUV out of the bayou.
A Nissan Pathfinder is pulled from Bayou LaCroix in Bay St. Louis on Saturday after its driver crashed through the concrete guard rail and into the water. Northbound lanes of Mississippi 603 were blocked for more than an hour as crews worked to get the SUV out of the bayou. jmitchell@sunherald.com

A woman driving north on Mississippi 603 on Saturday morning crashed through a bridge railing and plunged into Bayou LaCroix, officials said.

Hancock County Chief Deputy Don Bass said officials arrived at the accident at 7:30 a.m.

The woman was rescued before her Nissan Pathfinder SUV had fully submerged in the bayou.

Bass said she was taken by ambulance to Garden Park Hospital. Her injuries were not life-threatening.

The small portion of concrete railing destroyed in the crash is hanging off the side of the bridge.

Crews cleaned shattered concrete and glass off the road after the accident.

Crews took about 15 minutes to pull the SUV out of the water and back on the bridge. Its windshield was smashed, as were its rear window and several side windows, and the driver-side door. Many people who watched Sun Herald’s live coverage of the SUV’s recovery commented they were thankful the woman survived.

A diver, tethered to the bridge with ropes, went into the bayou and connected the wrecker’s cables to the SUV.

As workers winched the SUV over the edge of the bridge, it briefly started smoking but the hot spot was quickly extinguished.

The state Department of Marine Resources launched a boat about 9:30 a.m. to assist in the investigation.

Bass said officials would know more about what happened after the SUV was retrieved.

Northbound lanes of the highway were blocked during the recovery operation. MDOT said the lanes reopened after the was removed on a wrecker.

Bay St. Louis police also responded and are helping in the investigation, Bass said.

Justin Mitchell: 228-604-0705, @JustinMitchell_

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