Five Douglaston commuters waiting in the rain for a Q30 bus wound up in ambulances – after a 17-year-old driver crashed into the bus shelter they were huddled under.
Shortly after 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday, October 7, the white 1998 Nissan Sentra crossed the westbound lanes of Douglaston Parkway, jumped the curb and plowed into the shelter at 65th Avenue, injuring the five, who were taken to “either North Shore or LIJ,” according to a police source.
The driver was pinned in his car according to a police source. He was extracted and taken to North Shore hospital with a hip injury, according to police. Douglaston Parkway had to be closed in both directions during the emergency response.
The list of injuries to the three women and two men ranging in age from 17 to 62 is significant: “Male white, 62, possible broken leg; female white, 46, leg and hand lacerations; male white, 32 possible broken legs; female Asian, 23, lacerated legs; female Hispanic, 17, complaining of pain in the legs.”
One of the injured was listed in critical condition, while the others were in serious but stable condition, according to reports.
In addition, the victims had hand injuries, according to the source, possibly defensive, hinting that they may have seen the car coming.
According to a published report, the driver was attempting to pass a vehicle he had been tailgating. “He went into the other lane to overtake me [and] he lost control and he hydroplaned,” dental technician Marina Fishman said.
“He hit the curb, and he went airborne, hitting people like a bowling alley,” she said.
Some of the victims were slammed through the glass wall of the shelter, while other terrified commuters barely escaped injury, according to reports.
The crash occurred on a steep, “S” curve stretch of road that follows the Colonial-era wagon trail through “the Alley.”
According to police, the driver “had a clean license;” he was neither arrested nor issued any summons. “We weren’t there to witness an infraction,” the police source said.