SARASOTA, Fla. – Jan. 13, 2015 – 3:45 p.m.
Officers with the Sarasota Police Department responded to the 3900 block of Glen Oaks Manor Drive, Sarasota, at approximately 12:30 p.m. Tuesday for a vehicle submerged in a lake. Thankfully, a neighbor nearby heard the commotion and ran into the water to help with the rescue.
Gil DiLoreto, 86, was driving a Jeep Liberty, with Darlene Miller, 77 and Patricia Cothern, 82, who were passengers. Mr. DiLoreto backed out of a driveway and officers believe he mistook the gas pedal for the brake pedal and drove the Jeep in reverse nearly 100 yards and into a lake.
Cliff Wright, a neighbor just down the road from where Mr. DiLoreto was backing up, told Sarasota Police Officers he heard the revving of the engine and walked outside to see what the commotion was about. Mr. Wright saw the vehicle go into the lake and immediately jumped into help with the rescue.
All three occupants of the vehicle were uninjured and returned home safely following the crash. The Sarasota Police Department Dive Team responded and used specialized equipment, including a Vehicle Rescue System bag, to help retrieve the vehicle from the lake. The vehicle was towed away by Upman’s Towing. No charges are expected.