Driver hits three pedestrians; reportedly blames sun in her eyes

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by Natalie Brand

azfamily.com

Posted on September 17, 2013 at 9:58 PM

Updated Wednesday, Sep 25 at 6:34 AM

PHOENIX -- A driver reportedly blamed the sun after she drove through a red light at a busy Phoenix intersection and hit three young adults in the crosswalk.

It happened at 55th Avenue and Thomas Road after 6 p.m. Tuesday.

“As soon as they stepped in the crosswalk, I heard a boom,” said witness Jamie Flyte. “I turned to look at them, and all three were doing backflips in the air and landed in the street.”

Flyte rushed inside her nearby home to call 911. Another witness told 3TV the impact of the crash knocked the victims three car lengths from the crosswalk to the sidewalk.

A spokesman with the Phoenix Fire Department said one of the victims, a 20-year-old woman, was hospitalized with serious injuries. The other two victims, a teen male and female, had less serious injuries.

The unidentified driver who hit them stopped and cooperated with police.

“Pretty much it was the sun; the sun was in her eyes,” her son told 3TV.  He declined to be identified or comment further.

“She said she actually ran the red light,” said Lupe Espinoza, who lives nearby and spoke to the driver after the crash.

“Basically she said, 'I couldn’t see because I had sun in my eyes, couldn’t tell if the light was red or green,'” Espinoza said. “It happens all the time. Everyone runs that light because you can’t see.”

Espinoza and other neighbors say the intersection is known for accidents. Their thoughts now remain with the three people injured.

“I hope they’re going to be OK,” Flyte said. “They’re going to relive that nightmare over and over again.”

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