LITCHFIELD BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Midway Fire Rescue crews called off the search for a car in a pond at the Tradition Golf Club in Litchfield Beach around 4:15 Saturday afternoon.
The department’s chief Doug Eggiman said someone reported vehicle skid marks leading to the edge of a pond on the golf course around 6:30 on Saturday morning. The tire marks began on Reunion Drive and continued south across Willbrook Blvd. and onto grass,ending at the edge of a pond. The vehicle that caused the skid marks apparently ran over a stop sign for the golf cart path that parallels Willbrook Blvd.
Out of concern that a car may have crashed into the pond with a person inside, Eggiman said his department began a search of the pond. Eggiman said the tracks were clearly made by a passenger vehicle of some kind. The tracks were too wide to have been made by a golf cart he said.
Divers went into the water to search, and crews also used a device to drag the bottom of the pond. Neither effort found anything. At its center, the pond is about 25 feet deep Eggiman said.
The closest available sonar equipment on Saturday was with departments in Savannah, Ga., and Sumter. S.C., according to Eggiman. So he decided to use reserves in the Midway Fire Rescue budget to purchase sonar equipment on Saturday. While it took a few hours to get the equipment, his department immediately put it to use and still did not find signs of a vehicle or a person in the pond.
Eggiman said the equipment will now be useful in future searches, and having it will speed up search and rescue efforts.
“Oh, I’m very curious,” said nearby homeowner Jeanie Dailey. “I’ll be curious until I find out exactly what this is. I don’t feel like there’s any danger associated with it, but when you have this kind of activity in your neighborhood, certainly you want to know.”
Unfortunately for Dailey and other curious onlookers, it is still unclear what happened to the car that made the skid marks.
“It appears someone got very lucky [to have not run all the way in the pond],” Eggiman said.
The Georgetown County Sheriff’s office also assisted in the search.