Firefighters rescue woman from dangling car in Miami Springs

Woman nearly drives Lexus SUV off garage building, gets trapped

By Janine Stanwood - Anchor/Reporter, Ian Margol - Reporter

MIAMI SPRINGS, Fla. - Miami-Dade Fire Rescue pulled a woman from a Lexus SUV that was dangling from the second floor of a parking garage in Miami Springs after somehow barreling through the guardrails.

Witnesses at a nearby medical school said they heard a commotion and were stunned to see the car appear to be hanging off the edge of the garage.

"Oh my God! Is the car going to fall? Is the car going to fall? Is she okay?" Trina Askew said.

Firefighters arrived about 4 p.m. to the garage at 700 S. Royal Ponciana Blvd. and quickly assessed the situation.

Battalion Chief Danny Cardeso said the driver was "still panicked, but behind the wheel."

Cardeso and the rescue captain at the scene said a truck went into the garage to start anchoring the SUV, followed by other heavy duty trucks that arrived on the ground. Crews began creating anchors and securing pulleys to stabilize the car. 

The SUV's hatchback helped to keep it wedged in the opening.

"That's the only thing that was really keeping her from falling," Cardeso said.

Just after 5:30 p.m., firefighters finally pulled the shaken driver, identified as Nailan Estrada Jimenez, 36, to safety and said she was in good condition. She told Local 10 News the incident happened quickly and that she was relieved to be on solid ground.

According to a police report, Jimenez told officers she was trying to back out of her parking space, but must have accidentally put the car into drive instead of reverse and then hit the gas.

Her smashed-up Lexus was carefully lowered to the ground and towed away.

"As a nurse, your heart goes out to that person," Askew said.

Police said Jimenez is a student at Miami Regional College, which is just behind the parking garage.

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