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Van plows into diners on Los Angeles sidewalk, 8 injured

The driver of the van that plowed into the people dining on a Los Angeles sidewalk has been arrested. The victims included a 44-year-old man who suffered critical injuries.

world Updated: Jul 31, 2017 09:16 IST
Associated Press
Associated Press
Associated Press, Lod Angeles
Van,Diners,Los Angeles sidewalk
Broken restaurant tables and chairs are seen under a van that plowed into a group of people dining on a Los Angeles sidewalk injuring several Sunday, July 30, 2017.(AP Photo)

The driver of a van that plowed into a group of people dining on a Los Angeles sidewalk, striking and injuring at least eight people, was arrested Sunday on suspicion of hit-and-run, authorities said.

A witness told The Associated Press the van jumped a curb and careened into a group of people eating outside The Fish Spot restaurant in the city’s Mid-Wilshire neighbourhood. The vehicle knocked down a white picket fence that served as a barrier between diners and pedestrians on the sidewalk.

“Everyone was eating, enjoying life and out of nowhere this van ran them over,” Courtney Crump said.

He said several victims were pinned under the van as panicked witnesses rush to pull them out. A man who was the first person struck by van had severe head injuries, Crump said.

“I heard loud, agonizing screams. I’m shook up,” he said.

An official, left, interviews a witness after a van plowed into a group of people on a Los Angeles sidewalk on Sunday, July 30, 2017. (AP Photo)

The victims included a 44-year-old man who suffered critical injuries, three who were seriously hurt and four others who were taken to the hospital in fair condition, Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart said.

A preliminary investigation indicates the driver ran a red light and collided with another car, police Sgt. C. Barlow said. The impact of the crash caused the van to run off the road and onto the sidewalk.

The driver came out of the van and appeared disoriented, Crump said. He jumped back into the van, prompting witnesses to hold him until authorities arrived at the scene.

The driver’s name has not been released.

First Published: Jul 31, 2017 09:16 IST