An Arizona woman survived for six days in the woods after a horrific crash left her car hanging mangled in a tree, PEOPLE confirms.
The unnamed woman was driving on a highway in Wickenburg on Oct. 12 when she lost control of the car, a spokesperson for the Arizona Department of Public Safety tells PEOPLE. The vehicle barreled through a fence and dropped 50 feet into a tree.
The mangled car became tangled in the mesquite “where it remained suspended above the ground,” police wrote in a statement. Injured, the 53-year-old woman remained in the vehicle for days before finally climbing out and walking toward nearby railroad tracks in hopes of finding rescue.
“She never made it because of her weakened physical state,” the statement continues.
Days later, on Oct. 18, a pair of maintenance crewmembers with the Department of Transportation, Zach Moralez and Josh Miller, stumbled upon the crashed car as they worked with a rancher, Dave Moralez, to capture a cow, according to police. The trio, along with Trooper Caleb Hiegel, searched the car, but found no one inside.
“Instead, they found human tracks leading towards the Hassayampa river bed,” the statement reads. “Trooper Hiegel and Zach Moralez followed the tracks for 500 yards and discovered a severely dehydrated woman with serious injuries.”
They began treating the woman immediately and she was transported to a local hospital by helicopter, the spokesperson says. She has since been released.
A similar situation occurred in California over the summer. Angela Hernandez fell 200 feet off of a massive cliff near Big Sur while driving her Jeep. She remained lost and injured for nearly a week before being found by a pair of hikers.