A Michiana mom was trapped in her vehicle for some 12 hours following a bizarre traffic accident in Elkhart.
In the end, her cell phone turned out to be a real life-saver. “If we didn’t have the technology to locate her using that cell phone I don’t know when or if she would have been found anytime soon,” said Trent Smith of the Indiana State Police.
Investigators believe it all began in broad daylight--about 1:00 p.m. Thursday afternoon along the John Weaver Parkway near the airport.
For some unknown reason, Loreena Storer’s Chevy Blazer veered left across the median, across the opposite lanes of traffic, and into a 20 foot deep ditch.
The wreckage was essentially hidden from the passing traffic for hours. “There's thousands of cars that go through that every day, probably nearly a thousand cars passed by her,” said Trent Smith.
While Storer had a cell phone in her pocket, she did not answer repeated calls from family members, nor did she make any calls. “She had been knocked unconscious and was kind of in-and-out of consciousness due to her injuries, she didn't even realize the cell phone was ringing,” said Smith.
Police responded with some cell phone ‘pinging,’ which pinpointed the location of the signal coming from Loreena’s phone. By that time, it was 12:50 a.m. Friday morning. “So they got the ping and the ping was putting them near Aeroplex Drive. They parked their cars, got out, one took one side of the road, another trooper took the other side of the road with their flashlights,” said Trent.
One officer’s flashlight finally caught a reflection of a tail light, and the mystery was finally solved. “They both walked up to the vehicle, shined the flashlights into the car and see, to their great surprise, found a semi-conscious woman down there. So she actually, you know, looked surprised and was able to communicate with them,” said Trent.
Storer’s injuries are not believed to be life threatening. Police say she was conscious today and talking with her husband.
When Storer failed to show up for work—family members became suspicious and eventually reported her missing. That happened at about 11:00 p.m. Thursday night.