By Bev Jordan
A 25-year-old man driving to work for his first day as a contractor with a large commercial organisation was found dead in his hire car several metres below the water in Cattai Creek, next to Cattai Ridge Road Bridge, in Glenorie at 1.10pm this afternoon (Wednesday, March 24).
The Western Sydney man called emergency services at about 6.25am saying he had driven into flood waters and his vehicle was sinking.
The 000 operator stayed talking to the man but lost contact with him at 7.04am.
Officers from The Hills Police Area Command attended the scene on Cattai Ridge Road, near Hidden Valley Lane, along with SES Flood Rescue, shortly afterwards but could not locate the vehicle.
Police divers located the vehicle which was 6 metres under water just after 1pm. Detective Inspector Chris Laird said there were signs that the man had tried to get out of the car but had not been able to.
Det Insp Laird said that the padlocked gate across the road was 10m underwater and could not be seen. He confirmed that there were road closure signs on the road.
He said the man was a Pakistani national who had been living in Australia for some time. He has not yet been formally identified. He said his friends were devastated.
He said the 25-year-old had been driving a brand new Toyota Camry hire car.
“We can only speculate why he couldn’t get out of the car, initial examinations show he made all reasonable attempts and that will form part of our inquiries as to why he couldn’t leave the car.”
He said part of the investigation would look at whether the electrics failed preventing him from getting out of the car.
He said the coronial investigations would also look at whether the closures of the road were made properly visible enough at the time of the incident. Insp Laird said the locked gates across the road were submerged and could not be seen from the road way at all.
“What happened was a complete tragedy.”
He said it was a very sad reminder not to attempt to drive into flood waters.