Seven people were killed earlier today after the vehicle that they were in lost control and fell from a Bronx River Parkway overpass, plunging 100 feet into a ravine, law enforcement officials said.
Three of the dead in the one-vehicle accident were children, said a spokesman for the Fire Department, Jim Long, including girls ages 12 and 10 and a younger girl whose age was not known. The others were an 84-year-old man and three women, ages 80, 45 and 30. All of the dead were in the vehicle (no pedestrians involved).
The accident occurred around 12:30 p.m. on the southbound lanes of the parkway, just south of Bronx Zoo. A police spokesman said that the vehicle was heading south in the passing lane when it lost control and struck the median; it then veered right across the other two southbound traffic lanes and fell over a guardrail.
The vehicle fell about 100 feet into a wooded area, property of Bronx Zoo, near the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s East 180th Street Yard and Maintenance Shop, the police said.
The accident was the second in the past year where a car fell off the same stretch of the Bronx River Parkway. Last June, the driver of a sport utility vehicle heading north lost control and the SUV hit a divider, bounced through two lanes of traffic and fell 20 feet over a guardrail, landing on a pickup truck in a parking lot. The two people in the SUV were injured.
City agencies will be asked to look at safety issues on the highway including guardrail height, Bronx borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. said in a statement Sunday.
“My prayers, as well as those of my office and all Bronxites, go out to the families of the seven victims,” he said.
Photo credit: Louis L.