BATTLE CREEK, MICH. - Authorities have resumed their search of the Kalamazoo River for a car that plunged into the water early Saturday, and may have spotted a wheel from the vehicle.
Working at the confluence of the Kalamazoo and Battle Creek rivers late this morning, crews in a boat lowered a camera into the water to assess whether an industrial magnet had latched onto the car Sunday afternoon.
The camera showed a car's wheel in the murky water.
Dive teams had trolled the rapidly flowing river with the magnet and twice they believed it had solidly latched onto an object that could be the car.
Mike McKenzie, Battle Creek's emergency services director, said the car may be in deep water just west of Washington Avenue.
The search has been concentrated in that area since the car was reported in the river about 4:44 a.m. Saturday.
A dive team from Allegan County assisted the search with a six-foot-long, 50-pound magnet that was dropped into the river from an Emmett Township Department of Public Safety boat.
The fast current kept divers from Allegan, Van Buren and Calhoun counties from entering the water.
Searchers believe the driver of the car was inside when it crashed through a fence and into the river near Dickman Road and Capital Avenue.
Battle Creek police have received a report of a missing 31-year-old Battle Creek man who was driving a rental car that matched the description of the missing car.
The search began after Battle Creek police said a motorist reported that the small car passed his vehicle at a high speed, then went off the road and disappeared. Police found evidence of a crash into the concrete channel and later obtained video from Treehouse Foods Inc. at 150 S. McCamly St. showing a small car in the river floating past the factory, with lights still illuminated.
© 2017 Battle Creek Enquirer