On Thursday morning, January 12, a taxi jumped a curb striking a 13-year-old girl who was waiting for a school bus in Brooklyn. The child miraculously survived with only a broken leg.
The Daily News got the incredible video showing the young teen, who sources have identified as Gittie Hershenbaum, simply standing on a Borough Park sidewalk in at approximately 8:15 a.m. She was waiting for the bus holding her dark red bookbag on her back and donning a plaid skirt and blue jacket.
According to the Daily News, “As Gittie fidgets on the sidewalk, twirling in semicircles, a black Toyota Camry traveling north on 55th St. crosses 18th Ave., jumps the curb and barrels past a dead-end sign. The video shows the girl darting to her right and then getting hit by the car.
She was briefly splayed on the hood of the Camry, which city officials said was an Uber vehicle, before the car slammed into a fence. A moment later, Gittie hobbles toward awestruck onlookers, telling them that she thought the car hit her toe, witnesses said. She survived with a fractured leg.”
Hours later, Israel Hershenbaum, Gittie’s father, told The News, “My daughter’s traumatized. We’re getting over it. I thank God that this is the outcome.”
Israel expressed the belief that it was his daughter’s large, full bookbag that helped to cushion the impact. He said, “Her backpack was very full of books, and that’s what (held) her back. Her backpack saved her.”
Nearby witnesses were amazed that little Gittie survived the ordeal.
A 32-year-old bystander, who referred to herself as Miriam, told The Post, “The girl had actually no clue what was going on. (As) I approached, I see her walking over to me. I’m the one that she actually hugged, and I’m like, ‘What happened?’ She says she thinks the car hit her toe.”
Gittie and the driver were both rushed to Maimonides Hospital by paramedics.
As of late-Thursday, cops said that the 48-year-old driver, who had a heart attack before veering off the road, was in critical but stable condition.
The Daily News reports, “The motorist was taking a home health aide to work when he lost control of the car. The passenger was trying to open a back door and escape before the car rolled through the intersection. But she was still in car when the girl was mowed down.”
Miriam said, “I heard a hysterical woman screaming. … She was a passenger … and I see her running out of the car.”
An Uber spokeswoman said that the passenger did not use the company’s app to book the ride at the time of the accident.
According to witnesses, when the sedan hit Gittie, her three sisters were straggling behind and just mere feet from the corner.
By Hannah Hayes