April 15, 2024

Columbus Post

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Glass is very strong – billionaire Angela Chao (50) drowned in Tesla


Austin, TexasThe window glass was very strong – the billionaire (50) drowned in Tesla

Businesswoman Angela Chao makes a mistake while turning her Tesla, causing her car to plunge into a pond. All efforts to save her failed.

Felix Draper
  • In February, billionaire Angela Chao drowned on her Texas estate.

  • He crashed his Tesla SUV into a pond due to driver error. All rescue attempts failed.

  • Now the Wall Street Journal has analyzed the crash in detail.

Angela Chao, a very wealthy businesswoman and sister-in-law of Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader of the US Senate, moved from New York to Texas with her husband Jim Breyer and their son James, 3, during the pandemic. A few miles west of Austin she owns a sprawling farm there with a horse stable, swimming pool, putting green, basketball court and ten-room guest house – and two ponds.

The weekend after February 9, Zhao returned there and invited seven friends to celebrate the start of the Chinese New Year. At midnight, Chao left the guest house and got into his Tesla Model X to drive the few hundred meters to his home. She made a fatal mistake: She accidentally drove backwards instead of forwards, plunging her blue SUV down an embankment in one of two ponds.

An emergency call came from the car

When the car plunged into the pond, Chao called a friend in a panic. After his call, he jumped into the pool and tried to pull her out before rescuers arrived on the scene. According to a report made available to the Wall Street Journal, fire crews arrived 24 minutes after the emergency call. A dispatcher described the vehicle as completely submerged in water, and some sheriff's deputies were able to stand on it as they tried to rescue Chao.

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The site had to be lit and diving teams and a tow truck were called in to support the rescue operation. But the truck needed to pull the Tesla out didn't have a long enough cable. Also, it is said that the driver was afraid of electrocution. All attempts to break the car's windows were unsuccessful. According to tests conducted by the American Automobile Association, the protective glass used by Tesla is nearly impossible to break underwater.

Underwater Car: This is what you need to do

According to experts, if a car is submerged in water, it takes a minute for the driver to get out. When vehicles were built with manual mechanics, the driver could roll down a window to do this, although this often required a clear head in an emergency. In newer vehicles like the Tesla Model X, the driver has only a few seconds to roll down the windows before the water gets too high. After that, the only option is to break the window because the water pressure makes it impossible to open the door.

After the vehicle was finally pulled out of the water and the doors opened, hundreds of liters were spilled. Paramedics tried to revive Chao for 43 long minutes, but it was too late: the 50-year-old had been underwater for a long time.

In a statement, Angela's father James SC Chao said: “It is with a very heavy heart and deep sadness that I announce the death of my beloved youngest daughter, Angela Chao. She was a brilliant woman, charismatic and visionary leader and deeply loved by her sisters, all our family and friends. And the family writes : “As a role model for women in leadership, she inspired others to pursue their dreams.”

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