Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

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By the edhat staff

A Santa Barbara County firefighter found a missing 88-year-old woman in Gaviota on Sunday morning.

At 7:46 a.m., a County Batallian Chief was driving on Highway 101 southbound through Gaviota when they observed a swerving SUV with front-end damage.

Using their red lights, the firefighter pulled the swerving vehicle over and discovered the driver is a 88-year-old woman from Santa Paula who was reported missing on Saturday evening.

The woman was transferred to the California Highway Patrol for family unification. 


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montecito_matt Sep 25, 2022 11:00 PM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

How can a single Battalion Chief be considered "Santa Barbara County Firefighters," other outlets are reporting that the BC was driving home. Do they really need their County Vehicle when "driving home?" Seems like an extended use of SB County property and flagrant misuse of our tax dollars. Where's the accountability? Also, being off duty, are they covered in an accident or only while on-duty during official business? Not to mention, this sounds illegal, on the border of impersonating a law enforcement officer to pull over a motorist, whether they knew it was a missing person or not. I get "in the interest of public safety," but initiating a traffic stop in a Fire Department vehicle seems over-reaching. I am pro-public safety but thought this may have been taken a bit too far.

MarcelK Sep 26, 2022 12:48 PM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

The BC represents Santa Barbara County Firefighters, and the reporter may not have known how many were in the vehicle. Why bend over so far that your head ends up in your rectum in order to demand that no one use language that you deem "politically correct"? The excess is all on the right wing.

MarcelK Sep 26, 2022 12:49 PM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

"Seems like an extended use of SB County property and flagrant misuse of our tax dollars."

Seem like you are talking about things you know nothing about.

Babycakes Sep 26, 2022 07:28 AM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

BCs are on call 24/7/365 unless on vacation...and even then they may be called in due to the severity of a given incident. Therefore, are allowed to drive their "company" vehicle to/from home. Let's say there is a call at 3 AM that they need to respond to. Imagine if they had to go to the station house to retrieve their emergency vehicle. As far as using their lights to stop someone, they were simply using what they had at their disposal to get the attention of the driver.

Bird Sep 26, 2022 07:35 AM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

Sounds as though it was one person, yet the story reads, “ Using their red lights, the firefighters pulled the swerving vehicle over ,,,” it sounds as though several people were driving the vehicle! I understand about political correctness and not wanting to reveal the gender of the battalion chief but there needs to be clarity and accuracy in reporting. When there is only one, there’s available the neutral 3rd person singular instead of the 3rd person plural.

a-1664313774 Sep 27, 2022 02:22 PM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

Sure, it's a great story with an even better ending. But I think those comments, while overall misguided, had some valid points. Firefighters are not trained in pulling people over. If they did not pull someone over in a safe spot, and both were hit by a car, what then? Glad it all ended up okay, but it's best to wait for those who are trained for the job.

montecito_matt Sep 26, 2022 08:57 AM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

In referring to the BC, if you don't know please use they/them. Even though it was a she/her as other reports clearly allude. Thanks

bicyclist Sep 26, 2022 10:17 AM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

MM - it states (some-where's else) : "At about 7:45 a.m., Battalion Chief Nikki Stevens, who was going off duty, saw the woman’s vehicle, with front-end damage, swerving on the highway, said fire Capt. Scott Safechuck. Stevens began to follow the woman, he said, and the California Highway Patrol was alerted.".... so they used "he"?

a-1664219394 Sep 26, 2022 12:09 PM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

BICYCLIST, read what you wrote again. The 'he' is not the person who did the pulling over, it's the person who talked to the media.

millimesa Sep 26, 2022 11:09 AM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

I actually saw most of this incident and I believe SBC Fire isn't releasing all the details.
At about 7:30am a traffic collision was reported to 911 dispatch in the area of Mariposa Reina. By the time I was at Mariposa Reina the fire engine from station 38 was heading back to station and a battalion chief was parked on the shoulder with lights on. As I proceeded south, and almost to Refugio I passed another battalion chief who I saw turn on his lights to pull over the mentioned vehicle. All information points to the single 88 y/o being involved in a collision and driving away from the scene. That's why she was pulled over. Her small ford sedan had major damage to the front.

CoastWatch Sep 26, 2022 02:36 PM
Missing Elderly Woman Found in Gaviota

The comments on this show how deranged and twisted the SB Edhat commentators truly are. Chief Stevens did an outstanding job addressing a reckless driver and as a cherry on top, SHE found the missing person.

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