Monday, January 26, 2009

Tragedy On East Broadway: 1/23/09

video
from the nytimes of 1/23an excerpt
Van Plows Into Line of Children in Chinatown, Killing 2
By CHRISTINE HAUSER: An unoccupied van that had been left in reverse mounted a sidewalk and rammed into a group of preschool students on a busy street in Chinatown on Thursday, killing two of the children and injuring at least 11 other people, the authorities said.
The crash, on East Broadway between Catherine and Market Streets, transformed the teeming strip of produce stands, restaurants, tenements and shoppers into a scene of chaos as schoolchildren lay bleeding on the sidewalk and witnesses shrieked.“I heard screaming,” said Katharine Montaldo, 39, from the East Village. “I came running up. All I saw was blood.” The children had been walking back to their preschool, just around the corner, after a trip to the library. They were linked in a daisy chain intended to keep them together when the van lurched onto the sidewalk and crashed into them. The police said that a 4-year-old girl, Hayley Ng of Chinatown, died at the scene and that Diego Martinez, a 3-year-old boy from Chelsea, died at New York Downtown Hospital. Another 4-year-old girl was seriously injured and taken to the hospital, where she was listed in critical condition late Thursday; her name was not released. About 10 other people, children and some adults, had minor injuries, the authorities said.The driver of the van, identified as Chao Fu, 52, of Brooklyn, was not charged; his license and registration papers were in order and he tested negative for alcohol, said Paul J. Browne, the police spokesman. Mr. Chao had double-parked and entered a store, leaving the van running and in reverse gear, thinking it was in park, Mr. Browne said.

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