The Latest: Gas Smell Led Crews To Vehicle In Eel River, Bodies

LEGGETT, Calif. (AP) – Officials in Mendocino County say crews found a vehicle that plunged into the rain-swollen Eel river after noticing a gasoline smell. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office said Monday that a boating team searching the Eel River noticed the fuel odor about half a mile downstream from where the crash was reported. Searchers found the car Sunday and recovered the bodies of 41-year-old Sandeep Thottapilly and 9-year-old Saachi Thottapilly. The body of 38-year-old Soumya Thottapilly was found Friday. The couple’s 12-year-old son, Sidhhanty Thottapilly, remains missing. The office says 70 searchers combed the area, including more than 20 crew members searching the water in Jet Skis, boats and kayaks. It says the vehicle was encased in sediment but that divers were able to feel a person inside the car.

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