Researchers are still trying to determine whether a fatal accident involving a mother and daughter in the San Francisco Bay Area was either accidental or intentional after their cars were spotted by dozens of observers driving past. Parking lot without braking before plummeting from a cliff on one side. Northern California Coast viewpoints are popular on weekends.
California Highway Patrol Officer David de Rutte told media on Monday that the cause of the crash that occurred Saturday morning on Bodega Bay’s Head Trail is still under investigation. It’s unclear why Maria Teixeira, 64, continues to drive her Toyota SUV through a barrier in a large parking area at the aisle before plummeting off a cliff.
“Witnesses saw this car drive through a parking lot ̵1; and it kept driving,” Derratt said. “It never stops, no acceleration. But there is no braking as well “
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The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office said the woman in the passenger seat was the daughter of 41-year-old Teixeira Elizabeth Correia.
The women were found dead when rescuers took them down to the side of a cliff and reached a car parked on a roof about 100 feet on the rocks below, Bodega Bay Fire Protection Zone said. Dozens of people have witnessed the incident as beach hikers and hikers flock to the scenic Pacific Ocean to enjoy the clear weather on Easter weekend.
De Rutte said the vehicle will be examined and an autopsy will be conducted to determine if Teixeira was suffering at the time of the accident.
The mother and daughter lived in Dublin, San Francisco Bay, about 100 miles south of the site of the incident, both of which were employees of a public school in the Bay Area, The Mercury News reported, citing relatives and sheriff’s deputies. Teixeira is Supervisor at Montevideo Elementary in nearby San Ramon and Correia is a Grade Teacher at Lydiksen Elementary in Pleasanton.
Teixeira “is a warm, nice person. She smiles and is so happy. She helps everyone,” Erin Aitken, a teacher and former colleague, told the newspaper, remembering how proud Teixeira was when her daughter became a teacher. “She’s a huge cheerleader for her kids and she obviously loves being around them.”
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Correia’s bio on the school’s website says she teaches in Pleasanton, where she’s been growing up since 2005.
The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office is handling the death investigation, which is expected to take between two and three months and will include an autopsy, spokeswoman Misti Wood told Fox News by phone Tuesday. The California Highway Patrol is conducting a crime scene investigation and will determine whether it is intentional or unintentional, she said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.