Monday, May 5, 2008

Over the Edge

I am not a very good driver. Actually, I am a pretty bad driver. No one I know will let me drive unless they have no other option. For instance, right now my father is unable to drive because of his brace, so I have been ferrying him around. I try not to take it personally that he keeps his eyes closed and hums "There's got to be a morning after" until we reach our destination.

My sub-par driving skills are precisely why I am especially tickled with today's Story O' the Day. No matter what scrape I get into (and I literally mean scrape) I can say I have never done this...

Police investigating bizarre parking garage accident
May 5, 2008

A bizarre accident this morning at the beginning of the workday sent a woman over the edge of a downtown parking garage. The accident happened after the driver drove her SUV through a barrier and it fell down more than 20 feet.

We may never really know what caused the woman to drive over the edge because, according to police, she doesn't remember herself. But she survived and is expected to recover from quite a fall.

"I heard this loud crash. [I] thought it was coming from outside, maybe a car accident in the street," explained parking attendant Dave Robertson. "I'm surprised that this would happen, with a steel railing that's welded to the foundation and everything. That's pretty surprising."

It was just after 8:00 this morning when the woman, whose name has still not been released by the police, drove over the edge and down two stories in a parking garage located near 200 South and State Street.

Right now, the leading theories are that she blacked out, was on medication, or may have panicked when she accidentally hit the gas instead of the brakes.

Regardless of the cause, police do know she did accelerate over the edge, and her rescue was very complicated. "They called the heavy-rescue team so they could stabilize the car and went in and found the lady unrestrained," explained Capt. Karleen Montanez, with the Salt Lake City Fire Department.

The victim works at a nearby building in the downtown area and had just picked up some groceries. She told rescuers she did not remember anything after being at the grocery store.

The woman's small Toyota SUV was damaged in the fall, and she suffered injuries to her arms. She remains in the hospital tonight in serious condition.