Sat | Jul 22, 2017

Car drives wrong way in Times Square, ploughs into pedestrians

Published:Friday | May 19, 2017 | 5:00 AM
A car rests on a security barrier in New York’s Times Square after driving through a crowd of pedestrians, injuring at least a dozen people yesterday.

NEW YORK (AP):

A man who appeared intoxicated drove his car the wrong way up a Times Square street yesterday and ploughed into pedestrians on the sidewalk, killing one and injuring about 20 others, authorities and witnesses said. The driver was taken into custody and tested for alcohol.

Pandemonium erupted when the vehicle barrelled through the prime tourist location and came to rest with two of its wheels in the air. The car leaned on a lamppost and steel barriers intended to block vehicles from getting on to the sidewalk.

The crash happened at midday on a hot, clear day that brought large crowds of people into the streets to enjoy the good weather. Video posted online showed steam or smoke pouring from the car for a few moments after it stopped moving.

Asa Lowe of Brooklyn was standing outside the Levi store when he heard screaming, turned around and saw the car hitting people on the sidewalk.

"He's just mowing down people. He didn't stop. He just kept going," Lowe said.

After the car struck a barricade and stopped, the driver climbed out of his vehicle.

"He got out of the car and he just started running until people tackled him down," Lowe said. "Citizens just reacted."

The 26-year-old driver from the Bronx was taken into custody and was undergoing tests for alcohol, a law-enforcement official told The Associated Press. The man has a history of driving while intoxicated, according to the law-enforcement official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was ongoing.

Police do not suspect a link to terrorism, but the bomb squad has responded as a precaution to check the vehicle.