Egg Harbor Township Police Department

MARGATE – Egg Harbor Township Police have charged a man whose vehicle plunged into Risley Channel 11:10 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 14 with numerous traffic offenses, including driving while intoxicated.

Egg Harbor Township and Margate City police responded to the Risley Channel bridge on the Margate causeway, also known as Downbeach Express, a portion of which is located in Egg Harbor Township, and found John Abbott, 36, of Margate yelling for help.

The investigation revealed that his 2014 Audi was traveling toward Margate when it crossed into the westbound lane and exited the roadway on the westbound shoulder, continued off the road and entered the water. The vehicle was partially submerged, and Abbott was out of the vehicle holding onto a bridge piling when police arrived.

He was rescued from under the Risley Channel bridge by members of the Margate Fire Department who used a boat to reach him. Abbott suffered minor injuries and was transported to AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center Atlantic City Division.

The roadway was closed for approximately three hours while the vehicle was removed from the water and the crash scene investigated by Egg Harbor Township Police.

Margate Police and Fire Department, Northfield Police and the Bargaintown Fire Company of Egg Harbor Township, assisted at the scene.

Officer Patrick Daly of the Egg Harbor Township Police Traffic Safety Unit is investigating the crash. He charged Abbott with various offenses, including driving while intoxicated, reckless driving, careless driving, failure to maintain lane, failure to keep right, and open container of alcohol in the vehicle.



Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.