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

MIAMI BEACH, Florida. – A woman trying to parallel park sped 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., south of the Fifth Ward. A group of Joe’s Stone Crab patrons heard the loud noise from across the street.

Clément Lottier, a witness, shared a video that showed smoke and people running. Robert Deburro said people in the restaurant got up, some ran away and others ran into the smoke to help. DeBurro ran to help.

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

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

Darlene Nieves, who works near parking lots, was among the witnesses who ran into the smoke to help. She and Deburro said the Good Samaritans were quick to act and firefighters and police 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 off the area and asked drivers to avoid Washington Avenue between South Pointe Drive and First Street. Firefighters took the victims to hospital where a doctor found one dead, police said without identifying the victim.

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

Clément Lottier shared this photo of Miami Beach police officers shutting down Washington Avenue after a crash on Thursday. (Courtesy picture)

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Emily Hales, editor of Local 10’s News Assignment Office, contributed to this report.

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