Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Five Injured as Car Jumps Curb in the Hub

By David Greene

BRONX, NEW YORK, April 10- What began as a beautiful spring day quickly turned into confusion and mayhem-- as an out-of-control auto plowed into the bustling crowd along E. 149 Street and knocked-down a half dozen people, like bowling pins.

Rescue crews were dispatched to Bergen Avenue and E. 149 Street in the Hub, at 12:50 p.m., when police say an unidentified 85-year-old man lost control of a Toyota Camry as he traveled eastbound on Bergen Avenue.

Traveling at a high rate of speed, the vehicle jumped the curb striking a Con Edison truck and then hit the side entrance to Cee & Cee Department Store, before striking the pedestrians in the crosswalk.

EMS transported five injured to Lincoln Hospital, where two were reported as serious and two more as critical. At press time the two critical had been downgraded to serious. A sixth person reportedly refused medical attention.

With the jeans of her pants sliced up the seem, revealing an ace bandage, accident victim Francis Wright, 46, recalled the horror, "He was an 85-year-old man. He hit a car first, then he hit a wall and then he ran over us."

Wright believed the driver, "panicked," before swerving and hitting the wall.

Still shaken after suffering a gash in her leg that would require five-stitches, Wright revealed, "My husband pushed me out of the way, my husband was injured, he has a broken leg."

Wright then thanked one of the paramedics who tended to her and her husband, whom she was now waiting to be released.

Despite the near-death experience, Wright is now more concerned about the driver's insurance and who will pay their medical bills.

At least one published or televised report had witness statements that claimed the driver inadvertently hit the gas instead of the break, another hinted that the driver seemed intoxicated.

However, police say no criminality was involved and no charges or citations were issued against the driver, as the crash was deemed an accident.

The incident was eerily similar to another crash that took place on Thursday, April 21, 2011, when an out-of-control taxi plowed into a Cee & Cee Department Store on E. Fordham Road, killing Carmen Ahmed, 61. Coincidentally, no charges were filed against the driver in that crash. 

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