Seven people — including two children — were hospitalized on Thursday morning following a devastating six-car pileup on Flatbush Avenue outside the main branch of the Brooklyn Public Library.
Witnesses said the carnage began at 8:43 am when a speeding SUV plowed into the back of a queue of cars approaching Grand Army Plaza, sparking a domino-style smashup that left a half-dozen mangled cars scattered across the thoroughfare.
Motorists involved in the smash-up were taken completely by surprise.
“The light at Grand Army Plaza had just turned red. We were slowing down when this SUV came out of nowhere,” recalled motorist Jamal Bacchus, whose Nissan Morano was totaled during the accident. “It was like a chain reaction.”
Firefighters and paramedics spent the next hour butchering the twisted vehicles to free trapped motorists. In one case, the entire top of a car had to be removed to aid an injured driver.
An FDNY spokesman said that five adults and two children were removed to Kings County and New York Methodist hospitals with a smattering of minor injuries. No arrests had been made by late Thursday.
It is unclear whether the accident had any connection to a widely attended pro-bicycle rally which drew 250 people to Grand Army Plaza at around the same time. The accident and the rally were on opposite sides of Grand Army Plaza, but it is rare for so many people to be gathered at that hour on a weekday, so it is likely that traffic flow was affected.