Ithaca, N.Y. — Two Ithaca women were hospitalized on Monday after separate car accidents in the city occurred only a few hours apart, according to a news release from the Ithaca Police Department.

The apparently unrelated incidents both began with cars rolling forward without anyone driving them, a news release said.


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(Jeff Stein/Ithaca Voice)

Here are the two incidents:

1 — Ridgedale Road

The first incident occurred on the 200 block of Ridgedale Road at about 12:57 pm.

A woman was standing outside of her vehicle when it began to roll down a decline in her driveway.

In an effort to bring the vehicle to a stop, the woman got into the vehicle — but the car continued to roll down the hill toward her house, according to the press release.

The woman couldn’t fully get in the vehicle before the driver’s door hit the chimney of the house. She was pinned between the car’s front vehicle door and the “B pillar” (the divider between the driver and passenger-side windows) and had to be extricated and hospitalized.

The woman was then taken to a local hospital before being flown to a regional trauma center.

“The female victim sustained significant internal injuries, the extent of which are not known at this time,” a news release said.  Foul play is not suspected.

2 — Elmira Road

Fewer than five hours later, another woman also had to be flown to a regional trauma center. (The Voice previously reported on this accident here.)

This second victim, in an apparently unrelated incident, was hospitalized after her vehicle somehow started while she was standing in front of it.

The woman had been unable to get her car to start when it moved into gear and began rolling forward and hit her. The vehicle went into gear and then ran the woman over, pinning her between the pavement and the stone curb.

The woman was removed from underneath the vehicle before police arrived on scene. Still, she sustained “significant internal injuries” and had to be flown to the trauma center.

Foul play is not suspected in this incident, either. The extent of the woman’s injuries aren’t known at this time, a police press release said.

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Jeff Stein

Jeff Stein is the founder and former editor of the Ithaca Voice.