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VIDEO: Pregnant mother drives minivan with 3 kids inside into Atlantic

Posted at 3:35 PM, Mar 05, 2014
and last updated 2014-03-05 15:38:10-05

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (WTVR/CBS News) – Video shows the dramatic rescue of a South Carolina mother and her three children after their minivan drove into the Atlantic Ocean Tuesday afternoon.

Witnesses ran into the surf in Daytona Beach, Florida desperately trying to stop the minivan from driving farther into the ocean.

A pregnant mother, along with her three young children, ages 3, 9 and 10, were trapped inside.

“My friend pointed out that there was a car getting really close to the beach and actually started driving on the water,” said Taylor Quintin, who witnessed the ordeal. “I saw a kid in the back waving his arms around screaming help us help us and the car kept going deeper.”

Video shows the mother walking away from the SUV after rescuers got her out.

A tourist shot  video from the beach that shows two of the children being carried out of the water, away from the vehicle. Shortly after rescuers plucked the remaining child from the open trunk moments before a huge wave crashes over the top of the vehicle.

Investigators are trying to figure out how and why the vehicle ended up in the water, but witnesses said it appeared deliberate.

“When the bystanders went to help she clearly went deeper into the ocean she drove right towards it, so it’s hard to believe it was an accident,” one woman who saw what happened told WKMG.

The children were taken to a local hospital for treatment of minor injuries.

The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday morning that the mother driving the vehicle was still in police custody. A sheriff’s department spokeswoman reportedly described her as incoherent and uncooperative after the rescue.