Elderly couple saved by the bench as car mounts footpath
ONE eyewitness was brought to tears after a vehicle mounted the kerb and hit an elderly couple walking along River St, Ballina, yesterday.
"It could have been so much worse," said the eyewitness, visibly shocked by the incident.
"I'm just glad everyone is ok."
The couple - a 79-year-old woman and an 80-year-old man - were saved from more serious injuries by a footpath bench seat between them and the vehicle.
The Commodore station wagon, driven by a 67-year-old man, hit the bench seat outside I Luv Lollies about 11.10am with enough force to rip the seat from its mountings.
"It sounded like a pile-up of about three cars," the witness said.
"It's lucky no one was sitting on the bench."
It is understood the elderly man was hit by the vehicle which then pushed against the woman who then hit a shopfront window.
Another witness, who comforted the couple while a doctor passing the scene assessed them, said it was the fourth crash in the past 10 years in River St where a car had mounted the kerb.
The 79-year-old woman and 80-year-old man were taken to Ballina Hospital in stable conditions. It was suggested the man was able to walk to the ambulance while the woman was on a stretcher, having suffered some bruising.
The crash also appeared to have caused some damage to the door of the nearby tattoo parlour.
Police inquiries into the incident are ongoing.