A 45-year-old Orland woman died Saturday morning when her vehicle was swept away after she tried to drive through a flooded area on a rural Glenn County road.
Glenn County Undersheriff Todd James said a witness reported that the woman, identified as Nicole Dufour, drove her 2001 Nissan XE sport-utility vehicle around road closure signs on County Road FF, northwest of Orland. The witness told authorities that the vehicle took on water and was swept down Hambright Creek.
James said the creek runs near several county roads and is prone to flooding during heavy rains. Dufour, who lived in the general area, was on her way to work and apparently was running late, he said.
A California Highway Patrol helicopter was used to search the area for the vehicle. A Glenn County Sheriff’s Office dive team recovered Dufour’s body Saturday afternoon.
James said the incident is a tragic reminder of the importance of heeding roadway closure signs and not trying to drive through flooded areas.
“The signs are there for a reason,” he said.