A mother and daughter died after a car crashed off the edge of the scenic coastline seen in Northern California over the weekend, tumbling 100 feet as nearly a dozen spectators watched.
California Highway Patrol spokesman David deRutte said it was not clear why Maria Teixeira, 64, kept driving after she crashed a barrier at a walkway parking lot in Bodega Bay, just outside San Francisco. About 70 miles north
Elizabeth Correia, daughter of Teixeira, 41, was identified as a passenger in the accident around 11am Saturday.
DeRutte said their Toyota SUV entered a large gravel pit with no parking and “was driving at normal speed. It is driving over a cliff and doesn̵7;t stop. There is no acceleration and no braking. “
Photos from the scene showed an SUV on the roof of the rocks below. Between eight and 10 witnesses saw a severe jump, deRutte said.
Authorities are trying to piece together what happened, he said. The vehicle exam will be required and an autopsy will determine if Teixeira was experiencing medical problems at the time of the accident, deRutte said.
The mother and daughter are from Pleasanton, a suburb of San Francisco Bay.San Jose Mercury News reports that they both work at a Correia area elementary school as a first-grade teacher and Teixeira as their supervisor.
Tracie Culpepper, a first grade teacher, described Correia as a compassionate, devoted and natural teacher.
“You’re mine and I’m yours,” Culpeper told the newspaper. “I don’t know what I would do without her.”
In a letter on Monday, the headmaster of the school where Teixeira works, Montevideo Elementary called her “active in our community,” Mercury News reported.
“You can meet her in our university every day, doing whatever is necessary to serve the community. Wherever there are people, wherever there is activity, and wherever people need help, Maria is there and is happy to help. ”