Submerged car pulled from Whidbey lake

There was no body, no kilos of China white and no soggy cash inside a Ford Taurus that was raised from the depths of a small South Whidbey lake Thursday afternoon.

Members of the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office’s technical water rescue team descended into the turbid waters of Goss Lake to locate a car that had been discovered a couple of weeks ago by divers who were searching for a wedding ring.

Deputy Grant Walker with the Island County Sheriff’s Office explained that the civilian divers grabbed a license plate off the car — which had tabs from 2009 — but didn’t look inside. As a result, the submerged vehicle was treated as a potential crime scene in case something incriminating was inside.

The team from Snohomish County agreed to help with the case since Island County doesn’t have its own team of divers. Sgt. Greg Sanders, the supervisor of the dive team, explained that Snohomish County has 75,000 acres of water bodies within its jurisdiction and the office needs to be prepared to respond to a range of emergencies and incidents.

The car was difficult to locate, but they eventually found it upside-down in 27 feet of water, more than 100 feet out from the public boat ramp.

“It’s murky down there,” Sanders said. “The visibility was horrible.”

At one point, he explained, he discovered a dark area on the bottom of the lake where the temperature plummeted about 25 degrees as he investigated. It wasn’t a motor vehicle but what he described as an underwater “thermal.”

After the late 1990s Taurus was finally found, the deputies called Nathan Simpson, the manager of Scotty’s Towing in Freeland, who arrived with a tow truck. The car was further out from the beach than anticipated so Simpson and the divers had to link together a couple of different cables and attach them to the vehicle, with some difficulty.

The car leaked some gasoline, causing a rainbow sheen on the water, as it was slowly pulled up from the bottom.

In the end, all that was found inside the car was mud, cassette tapes, a gas can, trash and one big crayfish.

More in News

‘Rogue sheep’ observed | Island Scanner

THURSDAY, JULY 9 At 1:07 a.m., a Goss Lake Road resident reported… Continue reading

Council in a jam over sandwich boards

Langley officials decided to temporarily suspend an ordinance prohibiting the display of… Continue reading

Oak Harbor facing vacancies in key positions

The city of Oak Harbor has recently experienced some major staff turnover… Continue reading

Coupeville woman, 75, injured one-car crash Aug. 2

A 75-year-old Coupeville woman was seriously injured in a crash in Central… Continue reading

Baby deer shot, injured by pellet gun in Coupeville

A baby deer was shot and injured by a pellet gun last… Continue reading

Two Democrats ahead in Dist. 1 commissioner race, two Republicans in Dist. 2

If the first count of primary ballots holds, voters in Island County… Continue reading

Photo by Olivia Vanni/Herald file
                                Cars full of passengers headed to Whidbey Island pull into the ferry lines in Mukilteo on June 26.
Ferry ride isn’t a pleasure cruise in COVID-19 summer of 2020

Fewer boats mean longer waits on weekends. No more frolicking on the boat.

Island Drug moves back to Clinton

Nearly a month after closing the doors to its Ken’s Korner location,… Continue reading

Suspect crashes car while trying to flee State Patrol

An Oak Harbor man is accused of leading a Washington state trooper… Continue reading

Most Read