A woman and a toddler were pulled from the Hudson River by rescuers and had to be revived on Tuesday after they were spotted bobbing in the chilly water by passers-by who came across an empty stroller on a pier.
Police were investigating the incident as "an apparent suicide attempt," spokesman Paul Browne said.
The woman and the child were taken to a Manhattan hospital in serious condition, authorities said. The girl, who is about 18 months old, is believed to be the woman's daughter. Their identities were not immediately released.
Maryann Ford said she was walking with her 3-year-old godson and a friend on a pedestrian pier that juts out into the Hudson when she noticed the empty stroller on the pier.
She said she instinctively looked at the water between the pier and the remnants of an abandoned dock. That's when Ford, who lives nearby, and her friend spotted the woman and the child in the water, fully dressed.
"It's so disturbing. I just can't get it out of my head — seeing her head go down, and seeing that baby's head go under, and at one point seeing both go down," Ford said. "That's really shaken me."
Ford said they called out to the woman and she waved back at them. "She wasn't dog paddling toward the shore," Ford said. "She was dog paddling sort of farther out."
Ford said her friend dialed 911. About 20 minutes after rescuers plucked the two from the water, Ford and her friend ran into a man nearby who identified himself as the toddler's father.
"I said to the guy, 'What happened?'" Ford said. "He said: 'Nothing. I don't know. There were no issues.'"
Browne said police were questioning the man as a witness.
Rescuers were called to an area near 82nd Street at midday, the Fire Department said. The pair were pulled out of the river about 10 blocks south of there. The Fire Department rescued the woman, who was face-down in the water, and police rescued the child, who was face-up. Both were resuscitated. It was not immediately clear how long they had been in the water.
The Coast Guard said the temperature of the Hudson was around 50 degrees on Tuesday afternoon.