Man, 67, Found Alive 1 Week After His Car Plunges Off Castaic Cliff

CASTAIC (CBS) — A 67-year-old man has been found alive near his car — 200 feet off the side of a mountain road — six days after he disappeared.

David Lavau was traveling on Lake Hughes Road, north of Ridge Route Road, last Friday when he swerved to avoid bright lights coming in the opposite direction. After slamming on his brakes, his vehicle plummeted down an embankment.

He stayed in his car overnight, but the next morning, he discovered a deceased driver in a car nearby. Partially disabled, Lavau remained at the bottom of the hill, surviving on leaves and water from a nearby creek for six days.

He was rescued Thursday night after his family obtained security video from a nearby supermarket that ultimately led them to him.

“We know our dad. My dad would never not call his kids,” daughter Lisa Lavau told CBS2. “There’s four of us, and just by the time that fourth day, the fifth day and then the sixth day, we knew something was wrong. I live in San Francisco, so I drove up with my daughter and I said, ‘If anybody can find our dad, it’s us. We know he’s alive.’ And so, we stopped at every ravine and looked over every hill. And then my brother got out of the car and we kept screaming and the next thing, we heard Dad say, ‘Help, help!’ and there he was.

Lavau’s son, Shawn, hiked to the bottom of the canyon and located him before Los Angeles County firefighters extricated them from the canyon and transported Lavau to Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital.

He suffered several broken bones and is scheduled to undergo surgery on his dislocated shoulder Friday.

Authorities haven’t released the identity of the driver who was found dead at the bottom of the ravine.


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