1 dead, 6 injured after driver crashes into South Beach dining area

A woman who was trying to parallel park accelerated into an outdoor dining area killing one person and injuring six on Thursday in South Beach, according to the Miami Beach Police Department.

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – A woman who was trying to parallel park accelerated into an outdoor dining area — killing one person and injuring six — on Thursday in South Beach, according to the Miami Beach Police Department.

A witness said a child was among the victims shortly after 6 p.m., at the Call Me Gaby restaurant, at 22 Washington Ave., in the South of Fifth neighborhood. A group of Joe’s Stone Crab customers heard the loud crash across the street.

Clement Lottier, a witness, shared a video that showed smoke and people running. Robert Deburro said people at the restaurant jumped up, and some ran away and some ran toward the smoke to help. DeBurro ran over to help.

“I heard the screeching, crashing, screaming ... There was a small boy and a few people trapped under the vehicle. We grabbed the vehicle, a bunch of people grabbed the vehicle, and counted ‘One, two three!’ And lifted the vehicle up. A waiter pulled the young boy out,” Deburro said.

The Miami Beach Police Department shared this photo after closing Washington Avenue on Thursday after a crash. (MBPD)

Darlene Nieves, who works nearby parking cars, was among the witnesses who ran toward the smoke to help. She and Deburro said Good Samaritans were quick to take action and Fire Rescue personnel and police officers arrived quickly.

“It was the most amazing response from the city of Miami Beach that I have ever seen in my life,” Deburro said.

Officers used crime scene tape to block the area and asked drivers to avoid Washington Avenue between South Pointe Drive and First Street. Fire Rescue personnel took the victims to the hospital where a doctor pronounced one dead, police said without identifying the victim.

Detectives do not believe the driver was under the influence, and the cause of the crash remained under investigation, police said.

Clement Lottier shared this photo of Miami Beach police officers closing Washington Avenue after a crash on Thursday. (Courtesy photo)

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Local 10 News Assignment Desk Editor Emily Hales contributed to this report.


About the Authors:

Christian De La Rosa joined Local 10 News in April 2017 after spending time as a reporter and anchor in Atlanta, San Diego, Orlando and Panama City Beach.

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.