Ormond Beach, FL – An elderly Massachusetts man has been recommended for a driver’s license re-examination following a beach accident which sent four children to the hospital.
The Florida Highway Patrol says it happened around 4 o’clock this afternoon (March 20th) at Al Weeks Sr. North Shore Park in Ormond Beach.
FHP Lieutenant Kim Montes tells us the driver of a black 2012 Toyota Venza – 82-year-old William Johnson of Yarmouth, MA – was going northbound on State Road A1A when he pulled off to the shoulder and attempted to make a U-turn near Roberta Road.
“For an unknown reason, the driver lost control of the vehicle and traveled into a parking lot,” Montes added. “The front of the vehicle struck a pole and traveled through a fence.”
That fence was part of the barrier keeping vehicles from the beach, which aren’t allowed in that part of Volusia County.
From there, Volusia County Beach Safety officials say the vehicle dropped 20 feet or so towards the sand below and ran over a 5-year-old girl. She was airlifted from the scene to Shands Hospital in Gainesville and is now listed in serious condition.
Yesterday, 4 children were hit by an out-of-control vehicle that veered off A1A & onto the beach in Ormond-by-the-Sea. Good news: everyone survived and is going to be OK. The video shows how brave these kids were, even after what had to be one of the scariest experiences ever. pic.twitter.com/VJAmYHLrR6— Volusia Co. Sheriff (@VolusiaSheriff) March 21, 2019
Three other kids – a 3-year-old boy, a 5-year-old girl and an 11-year-old boy – were bumped by the vehicle, per Montes. They were taken to Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach with minor injuries.
All the kids were from the Florida town of Fairfield and are siblings who were visiting the beach with their parents, according to the accident report.
Johnson ended up at AdventHealth Ormond Beach with minor injuries. Troopers say he didn’t appear to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol and was wearing a seat belt at the time.
Montes also said that the driver told them he does not remember what happened, which is leading FHP to investigate whether this could be medically related.
Besides the re-examination, Johnson was also ticketed for careless driving.