Van Loses Control in Rockland, Strikes Children on Sidewalk

A van lost control on Bush Lane and hit several kids and cars

Tuesday, Oct 23, 2012  |  Updated 9:40 AM EDT
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Van Strikes 5 Girls in Rockland

NBC 4 New York

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Five girls playing on a sidewalk were struck by a van that lost control and jumped the curb in the New Square section of Rockland County Monday.

The van was traveling on Bush Lane in the mostly Orthodox neighborhood when it skipped off the street and crashed into the sidewalk and onto the property of a home, coming to a rest on a utility box. 

The girls, ranging in age from 7 to 9 years old and three of whom were sisters and cousins, were all struck by the van. They were taken to local hospitals with injuries from cuts and bruising to broken bones. 

One 9-year-old girl had a serious head injury, and a 7-year-old girl sustained a broken femur. They remain at Westchester Medical Center, police said. 

The three other girls were treated and released from Westchester Medical Center and Nyack Hospital. 

Authorities said the accident could have been deadly, but emergency workers responded quickly. One revived a 9-year-old girl who had stopped breathing. 

"The paramedics were able to have all five victims worked upon and transported from the scene within five minutes," said Ramapo Town Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence. 

The driver was identified as 42-year-old Rachid Elasri, a Spring Valley resident. Police said there was no sign of drug or alcohol use, and they've impounded the 2002 Ford Ecoline van to investigate what caused Elasi to lose control. 

Police said Elasri will not be charged in the crash. 

"There's a possibility there might be a problem with the motor vehicle itself," said Ramapo Police Chief Peter Brower. 

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