A drowsy senior citizen driver slammed into a group of people standing outside the Park Slope Armory at the corner of Eighth Avenue and 15th Street on April 15 — leaving four hospitalized.
Horrified witnesses said the grey sport utility vehicle was barreling down 15th Street from Bartel Pritchard Square at 4:15 pm when the driver — a man in his mid-sixties — lost control of the wheel.
“The SUV hit a car up the block, ended up on the sidewalk and kept going,” said Shadi Sarsor, an employee from the nearby Royal Supermarket. “It ran over the bus stop sign, just missing a bunch of kids crossing the street.”
The SUV charged across Eighth Avenue and slammed into four adults — residents of the Park Slope Women’s Shelter — before getting jammed between a tree and a light pole.
Sarsor and other witnesses rushed over and found the four victims sprawled out on the concrete.
“They were conscious, but they weren’t moving,” he said. “[The driver] was stunned. He said he didn’t know what happened, like he hadn’t absorbed it yet.”
Two of the victims were rushed to nearby New York Methodist Hospital on Seventh Avenue and Sixth Street, FDNY officials said. Two others were taken to Lutheran Medical Center in Sunset Park.
Police say injuries were light.
“It looks like one of them may have had a broken leg, but that was it,” a cop close to the investigation said.
But things could have been much worse: Droves of school-age children have been flocking to the armory ever since the YMCA opened a recreation center inside the 114-year-old former regimental drill facility a year ago following a $16-million renovation. The rec center was open at the time of the accident.
The investigation into the accident was continuing, but police sources say the driver may have nodded off just before the carnage began.
“[The driver] either passed out or fell asleep,” a police source said.
©2011 Community News Group
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