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Two dead in crash over cliffs at Bodega Head

Two women died Saturday morning at Bodega Head after their vehicle crashed through a parking lot barrier and over a high ocean cliff at the popular sightseeing destination.

The incident initially prompted a low-tide rescue operation, with crews from the Bodega Bay Fire Protection District joined by the Sheriff’s Office, including the Henry 1 helicopter, as well as other nearby firefighting crews, said Capt. Justin Fox of the Bodega Bay district.

The vehicle, a gold Toyota SUV, went down a cliff of at least 70 feet in height and landed on its roof in the ocean’s tidal pools, Fox said. By the time firefighters and a deputy were able to get down to the vehicle, the two women inside were declared deceased, he said.

The crash occurred in front of dozens of witnesses at the scenic Pacific Ocean overlook who’d packed Bodega Head, taking advantage of clear weather on the Easter holiday weekend.

The vehicle was towed back up the cliff, and its two occupants were helicoptered away after they were extricated, according to Fox.

As a vehicle crash in unincorporated Sonoma County, the incident is being investigated by the California Highway Patrol.

A CHP spokesman, Officer David de Rutte, could provide little information at this stage in the investigation, pending autopsies, a vehicle investigation and the sorting through of numerous witness statements.

“There’s just so many things that we have unanswered about it,” de Rutte said, adding that he expected to be able to release more details in the coming days.

You can reach Staff Writer Will Schmitt at 707-521-5207 or will.schmitt@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @wsreports.

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