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Mud Bug
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Discussion Starter #1
This happened yesterday and has been all over the news here, and when I saw the story promos I realized the car she was driving was a NB.

Apparently she hit the gas instead of the brakes and went into the lake. She was able to climb out through the sunroof and some boaters pulled her to safety.

You can tell what it is by the roofline :p


This video has a shot of them pulling the car out of the lake (around 1:18)... poor buggy :(
EDIT: sorry the script to embed doesn't want to work so here's the link.

And links to a couple other videos:
More details on the electrics in the bug still working after being submerged and her biggest worry being for her car
Windshield wipers still going
 

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Super Moderator
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Poor Beetle! :cry:
 

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Kind of thinking she went out the window. Can't imagine her closing the sunroof after her escape unless she didn't want the interior to get wet. :D
 

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Mud Bug
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Discussion Starter #4
Except that all of her interviews and the woman that helped her out of the car and encouraged her to stand on the seat/steering wheel say she climbed out the top. The footage from right after her rescue also shows the car with the windows up and the roof open. I'm not sure either how the rest of the pictures show the opposite but all the reports say sunroof :dunno:
 

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Premium Member
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Except that all of her interviews and the woman that helped her out of the car and encouraged her to stand on the seat/steering wheel say she climbed out the top. The footage from right after her rescue also shows the car with the windows up and the roof open. I'm not sure either how the rest of the pictures show the opposite but all the reports say sunroof :dunno:
The windows open I get, maybe the tow truck driver/diver to drain the water from the car as it was coming up, but closing the sunroof? At 76 perhaps she just was a little confused! (lol) jk, didn't watch the video.
 

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New NB Owner/Lover!
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Except that all of her interviews and the woman that helped her out of the car and encouraged her to stand on the seat/steering wheel say she climbed out the top. The footage from right after her rescue also shows the car with the windows up and the roof open. I'm not sure either how the rest of the pictures show the opposite but all the reports say sunroof :dunno:
Yeah, I was confused when I was reading it as well... it said that the windows would not work becuase they were submerged, but the roof wasn't yet so the sunroof opened... weird!
 

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Everett Street in May
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Sooooo how long did it float? The old air cooled bugs could float for a good bit before enough water seeped in.

Think a guy who welded all the door jams set a worlds record in a bug for float time.




Sent from my Autoguide iPhone app
 

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Yeah, I was confused when I was reading it as well... it said that the windows would not work becuase they were submerged, but the roof wasn't yet so the sunroof opened... weird!
You know the media! Being submerged shouldn't affect the operation of the electric windows or the sunroof. As long as there is still a functioning power source current flows through wires, switches, etc, under water. I've seen cars submerged with their lights on. A semi one time, lights still on 24 hrs later.
 

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Mud Bug
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119 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Based on the videos, it sounds like she just panicked and couldn't get the windows to open but the sunroof switch was above water so she probably thought of that next... I think the most likely explanation is that the windows were probably opened after the fact when they were trying to recover the car. Why they would close the sunroof at that point, though, is still a mystery ;)
 

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Based on the videos, it sounds like she just panicked and couldn't get the windows to open but the sunroof switch was above water so she probably thought of that next... I think the most likely explanation is that the windows were probably opened after the fact when they were trying to recover the car. Why they would close the sunroof at that point, though, is still a mystery ;)
Might have been concerned is was going to rain :D
 

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Okay, I have now watched all three videos. In the two of the videos, the car is clearly shown, sitting in about 3 1/2 feet of water, with the top open, the windows closed, the wipers swiping, and the headlights burning. It appears at this point, no one has gone to the aide of the car.

The lady driver stated she couldn't roll the windows down, thus exiting through the roof, but I think the window issue and her inability to open the doors was just because she was a little rattled (the doors would not open until they were unlocked) Poor thing, said she even tried putting the car in reverse, but it wouldn't go anywhere (still floating, no doubt). Note she never turned off the car - as shown the electrics were all still working and the ignition was still on (wipers swipping, headlights on). There was also a news reporter comment that the car was pulled from the lake just before the downpour hit. Now, I am convinced, who ever opened the car, turned off the windshield wipers and lights, and lowered the windows, probably closed the sunroof (and I'm sure because of the impending storm and the desire to keep the interior from getting any wetter than it was :D).

I'm betting the car will show up on a "Tote the Note" lot in Houston in a copule weeks -
2002 NB, very low mileage, perfect condition, one owner (little old lady who only drove the car to church on Sunday), well maintained, no accidents, clean Carfax!" :D

M.
 

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Locked and without power, the door handle always unlocked the door from the inside.

The windows wouldn't roll down due to the pressure of the water on them, the same with the doors. Myth Busters did a whole episode on this -- there comes a point where your power windows (or manual ones) can't move due to the pressure from the water on them. Same goes for the doors.

The sunroof -- because the curve kept it above water -- had no problem opening and letting her escape.

I will say the photo in the thread makes it seem like the windows COULD come down, but at that level opening the DOOR might have been a challenge for a 22 year old football star, let along a little old 76 year old lady.
 

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Now, I'm intrigued. Agreed, no one would be able to open the doors against the external pressure (until the water level inside had reached about the same level), that's a no brainer. The windows, I'm not so sure. Going to apply pressure to mine and see how much needs to be exerted before they won't move. As to the doors being openable without being unlocked, again going to have to check mine. All my other vehicles require the door being unlocked, going to check the Bug, I thought it was the same, but I could be wrong about that, but as said, locked or unlocked, once partially submerged she would not have been able to open the door. :)

Update: Yep, you're right, doors open from the inside regardless, however, I could not apply enough pressure on the windows to keep them from operating. I'd like to see the Mythbuster thing on that one. Even with significant pressure pushing against the glass, the guides would keep it from deflecting to the point of it not operating.
 

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We also don't know the state of her power window motor, track oiling, or etc.

My driver window is off track and will bind and stop moving entirely (after pinch protection has kicked in) even if I attempt to help it.

But I'd love to see a scientific test!
 

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Premium Member
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We also don't know the state of her power window motor, track oiling, or etc.

My driver window is off track and will bind and stop moving entirely (after pinch protection has kicked in) even if I attempt to help it.

But I'd love to see a scientific test!
Well, SOMEBODY put them down! :p
 

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Super Moderator
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I was amazed by the videos showing the poor NB underwater, and the wipers going, splashing water. I don't think it is floating, just a shallow urban lake.

I was disturbed by her laughter, but I guess people react to stress differently.
 
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