WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- U.S. Park Police say 22-year-old Josh A. Kuhlman of Arlington, Virginia was discovered inside his car in six feet of icy water in Rock Creek Park. The rescue effort began after a jogger called 9-1-1 at 10:22 a.m. Sunday to report a tire sticking out of Rock Creek near Dupont Circle's P Street Beach.
DC Fire and EMS crews wearing protective suits responded and after breaking away the ice were able to pull Kuhlman from the vehicle which was found on its roof. DC Fire and EMS Assistant Chief Lawrence Schultz tells 9NEWS NOW divers broke the window of the car and opened the door to get Kuhlman out.
The former John Hopkins University soccer player was given advanced CPR on the scene but was declared dead at George Washington University Hospital later on Sunday after rescucitation efforts failed. Kuhlman had no vitals when transported according to Schultz. The DC Medical Examiner's Office tells 9 NEWS NOW that while an autopsy was performed, the cause and manner of death have yet to be determined.
The rescue and recovery efforts involved dozens of emergency and police personnel but were hampered by temperatures in the high teens and low twenties, strong wind gusts, fast moving waters with frozen ice chunks and no witnesses. Schultz says divers had to get on their knees in the icy water and search by hand to see if any other victims were trapped under or around the car, A search of the creek and its banks did not turn up any other victims according to authorities.
U.S. Park police are not sure when the accident happened or what caused Kuhlman's car to plunge twenty feet into Rock Creek. It took several hours and three different tow trucks to dislodge the badly mangled vehicle from Rock Creek.
Written by 9NEWS NOW