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September 28, 2004

Car veers off Laureles Grade

From: Monterey County Herald, CA - Sep 28, 2004

Deaf woman rescued

Herald Staff Writer

Firefighters and other emergency workers rigged up a pulley system on Monday to rescue a 52-year-old Monterey woman whose car apparently had plunged off Laureles Grade the night before.

Complicating the rescue effort, the woman is deaf, so firefighters needed to write questions on a sheet of paper to communicate with her.

The rescue effort began around 11:20 a.m. Monday after passers-by spotted it about 150 feet below the summit of Laureles Grade, the winding roadway that connects Carmel Valley with the Monterey-Salinas Highway.

Firefighters hiked through thick brush and poison oak to set up the pulley system to lift the woman out of the area, said Michael Urquides, a division chief with the Salinas Rural Fire Department.

The woman had been reported missing by her family on Sunday night and rescuers were unclear how long she was in the car before it was spotted.

Monterey County sheriff's deputy Joe Moses said he had to write and draw to communicate with the woman before she was taken to the hospital for an evaluation.

"She seemed in a little bit of shock," Moses said. Authorities said the woman may have intentionally driven off the roadway. Clarissa Aljentera can be reached at 648-1171 or claljentera@monterey

© 2004 Monterey County Herald and wire service sources. All Rights Reserved.