A 73-year-old woman was killed Friday when an SUV slammed into the front of a Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlour in Buena Park.
The call came in around 6:11 p.m. regarding at crash at the restaurant located in the 8600 block of Beach Boulevard, according to Capt. Ben Gonzales with the Orange County Fire Authority.
Initial reports indicated the car struck several patrons outside the restaurant who were waiting for a table.
“Literally people were sitting on the bench and their heads were up against the window and the car wouldn’t come off them,” witness Jennifer Scharnikow said.
One of those patrons was pinned between the car and a gate outside the restaurant, according to Officer Bill Kohanek with the Buena Park Police Department.
Witnesses frantically tried to get her out from under the car, officials at the scene told KTLA.
“It looked like she was unconscious and she was bleeding from her mouth,” according to witness Jon Peltier.
The woman, who was initially identified as being in her 60s, was later pronounced dead at UCI Medical Center.
At least five other people were hospitalized, Gonzales said. They were taken to UCI Medical Center and Western Medical Center.
A 13-year-old girl and a 40-year-old woman received moderate injuries, while an 11-year-old boy, a 40-year-old man and a 12-year-old girl were transported with minor injuries.
The SUV was being driven by an elderly man who was leaving the restaurant with his wife, according to Kohanek.
It was still very early in the investigation but Kohanek said, it appeared the driver went forward instead of backing up.
The restaurant chain’s CEO rushed to the scene then to the hospital when he learned of the crash.
“We’re known for our lines… because it’s a place of fun and obviously the fun went very, very tragic today,” said Michael Flemming, CEO of Parlour Enterprises, Inc.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and the driver as well,” he said.