SUV launches onto docked boat

(UPDATE: Thursday, 9:50 a.m.) A 47-year-old Spring Lake woman escaped with minor injuries after possibly suffering a medical problem and crashing her SUV onto a boat at the Holiday Inn, 940 W. Savidge St.
Becky Vargo
Jul 13, 2012

Police confirmed the driver was Cari Draft Elliott. The car had an EcoTrek license plate and a tire cover that said EcoTrek Fitness, Lead Funmaster.

Comments on her Facebook page express concern about her situation. A call placed to Elliott was not returned by press time.

Elliott was taken to North Ottawa Community Hospital by ambulance following the 5:45 a.m. crash. She suffered minor lacerations to the face, said Sgt. Curt Theune of the Spring Lake/Ferrysburg Police Department.

Theune said witnesses told him that Elliott pulled into the Holiday Inn parking lot, backed into a front-end loader, and then accelerated at excessive speed across the parking lot. She went through the trees, became airborne and landed on a 32-foot Sea Ray owned by Grand Ledge-area residents. There was nobody on the boat at the time.

“We’re looking at a potential medical situation,” Theune said when asked how the crash could have happened. “Alcohol is not a factor."

To see more photos from the scene, click here.

Ed Gillies of Frisco, Texas, was visiting friends at the condominiums next to the Holiday Inn when he heard the crash.

“I heard a boom. It sounded like thunder,” Gillies said.

He walked over to the boat and saw Elliott sitting on the boat. He said two people who appeared to be cooks were already there.

“We helped the woman get off the boat,” Gillies said. “She said she blacked out and didn’t really know what happened.”

Gillies said Elliott told him she was driving on Savidge Street, started to get dizzy, so she pulled into the Holiday Inn parking lot. The witnesses told him she backed into the Caterpillar vehicle, and then sped across the parking lot, which was empty at the time.

“I’ve never seen anything like this before,” he said.

Theune said that Elliott was conscious and alert when police arrived. He also had never experienced this kind of a situation.

“I’ve been doing this 22 years and I don’t believe I’ll see it again,” Theune said.

This is not the first time Elliott has had an accident involving the Grand River. On Nov. 20, 2009, she drove into the river just west of her home in Spring Lake Township, having blacked out. She said at the time that she became dizzy, tried to pull off to the side of the road and then realized she was in the river, surrounded by water. Elliott was able to climb onto her car and await rescue by Spring Lake Township firefighters.

Police Chief Roger DeYoung said Elliott probably would not get a ticket, but would likely be required to do a driver re-examination.

Comments

PeopleAreAmazing

I did. I felt bad doing it.....not. Yes!! :-)

MeanSmith

You are amazing Sir!! Truly amazing!!

PeopleAreAmazing

I'll trust you on that. And if that's true - maybe you'll get there some day, but not with some of the questionable comments you're caught writing in these comment sections.

MeanSmith

Same to you Sir, same to you.

PeopleAreAmazing

Now wait a minute there.......you said I was amazing......and I said that you were not, but that maybe some day you could be if you stopped writing ridiculous things. You can't then come back and say....."same to you". That's called changing your mind. I already traveled that road. Now, it's your turn - and I'll be here to help you every step of the way. Step1: Stop drawing conclusions before you have all of the facts. Step 2: Don't stereotype. Step 3: No one cares what anyone else thinks, or says - unless you comment in a ridiculous fashion like you did early on in this article. Step 4: Before you hit send on one of your comments, consider if you were the person in the article. Would the comment your making actually help add perspective, or is it simply intended to be a blow horn for your own purposes? If it's a blow horn, refer to Step 3.

MeanSmith

Same to you Sir, same to you

PeopleAreAmazing

Thank you for proving my point.

MeanSmith

No Sir, I thank you for proving my point exactly

Athena

please, enough already

MeanSmith

NOT!!!!!!! Hahahahahahahahaa

ghresident

Aleast there was a boat for her to land on.......we may have had another drowning.

MeanSmith

This is true. All joking aside, at least no one was hurt.

boenairgeez

:0)

outandabout

hearsay....she is a good friend of mine and a lot of people, all who wish her well. Let's do this first, ok? Pretty amazing person, really amazing. Stop with all the guessing, etc. Pretty dumb. I only wish you all could meet her, she will be back on top very soon! and yes, driving :)

MeanSmith

No one ever said the woman wasnt 'amazing', Im sure she is. We are just concerned about the safety of others along with the drivers safety. We need to keep the people in this great community safe.

letsgetreal

Well since you know her so well than you know this is actually the third time this has happened. There was another incident up north near Traverse City. How great a person is she when she puts everyone's life at risk.

MeanSmith

Wow, this ‘amazing’ woman needs her license revoked. For the safety of herself and more importantly, others...

Athena

If it has happened more than twice then a driving intervention is in order. Seriously.

Athena

I have to say I'm really puzzled as to why you're enabling her dangerous condition when you claim to be a good friend. If all of you truly care about Mrs. Elliott then for God's sake stop pretending you don't see the elephant in the room. I get that you're all embarrassed for her. Just from a professional standpoint alone, this is horrible publicity for someone in the Health & Fitness biz. But please pull your heads out ---- THE WOMAN BLACKS OUT WHILE DRIVING. She's done it TWICE (that we know about) Again, I'm surprised that someone involved in the Health & Wellness field would endanger the health and safety of others this way. And could you clarify what she will back on top of? Hopefully not anything that can be driven. If what you mean is career-wise then someone has some very confused priorities here.
You sound pleased that she'll be driving again. I'm sure your grandkids will be first in line for carpooling. No? That's what I thought.

atcnomo

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained misplaced comment. Discussion Guidelines

boenairgeez

Wow A story for the grand kids. Maybe time for the powers that be to step in because lucky can only go so far.

MeanSmith

We need to keep this community safe! This is a dangerous situation! What if your kids were walking around that area when she erratically drove into the dock/boat!?

outandabout

this is ridiculous. Sorry.

outandabout

so do you think she is going to be driving around flying off docks, slamming into boats, terrorizing neighborhoods?...hmmm...

MeanSmith

Yes, not on purpose of course but it is a safety issue, dont be ignorant. Would you trust this woman to drive your kids around?? I definitley would not.

outandabout

ignorant? thnx....you are sweet. Is there a NiceSmith? yes I would trust her with my children....now get up and go and do some exercise! :)

MeanSmith

I guarantee I am in better physical shape then you. Wow, to say you would trust the lives of your children riding with this woman is like playing Russian Roulette!! You obviously don’t care about your own children! Unreal!!!

Athena

I see you're passing your time "away from the grid" constructively.

Soupy

It seems like a medical situation. So she probably is a great person but she needs to get that situation under control before she kills someone.

winona48

I know someone who has pulled over because of a seizure and is still driving. This is totally wrong. I hope I am not driving next to her if she has a medical issue. Being a nice person has nothing to do with it. It is a safety issue and a traffic hazard. I hope the State of Michigan really looks at this one before a tragedy happens!!

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