LAUDERDALE-BY-THE-SEA, FLA. (WSVN) – Authorities are investigating a multi-vehicle crash in Lauderdale-by-the-Sea that left one dead, sent two others to hospital and resulted in hours-long traffic closures.
Deputies from the Broward Sheriff’s Office and Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Police and Fire Units responded to the scene of the wreckage of six vehicles in the North Ocean Drive and Commercial Boulevard area near 6:25 p.m., Saturday.
Witnesses described the chaotic collision.
“I was scared, because I heard the ‘bang, bang, bang’, and then I saw things flying everywhere,” Lily DeCoste said.
“It was awful. It was like – it felt like death,” Marck Mangel said.
7News cameras captured three of the vehicles involved: a white Mercedes-Benz sedan, a gray Toyota minivan and a gray pickup truck with a yellow tarp on the driver’s side.
Witnesses said the truck driver rammed into the other vehicles involved, causing a chain reaction.
“The truck over there was accelerating and rolling on the sidewalk and clipped cars over there and, you know, like a domino thing: hit here, hit there,” DeCoste said.
Mangel said he was working with his group at a restaurant a few yards away when he heard the crash and rushed to help.
“We had to stop playing, and a group of people rushed over to help and make sure everything was okay,” he said. “I was there too, but it was already too late for the gentleman.”
According to witnesses, the driver of the van is the one who was killed.
Paramedics transported two other victims to an area hospital under unknown conditions.
deputies close North Ocean Drive to Commercial Boulevard in both directions while they investigated. The roadway has since been reopened to traffic.
BSO Traffic Homicide Detectives said the Broward County Medical Examiner’s Office will determine the driver’s cause of death.
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