One Dead as Vehicle Hits Scooter and Crashes Into Outdoor Dining Structure in Queens

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A 29-year-old man was fatally injured Thursday evening when a vehicle collided with the scooter he was driving and then crashed into an outdoor dining structure on a busy block of Astoria, Queens, according to a spokesman for the New York Police Department.

The man on the scooter, whose name was not released, was taken to Mount Sinai Queens and pronounced dead, the police said.

The driver of the vehicle, a woman around 50 years old, was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center, the police said. A third person, whose location when the crash occurred was unclear, was also taken to Mount Sinai Queens, fire officials said. Their conditions were not immediately available.

Investigators were trying to determine what led to the crash. One witness told a reporter at the scene that the driver of the vehicle was traveling “well over 50 miles per hour” before crashing into the dining area.

The crash occurred just before 8 p.m. Thursday by the corner of 35th Street and Ditmars Boulevard, in a commercial section of the neighborhood known for its sidewalk cafes and restaurants.

Video circulating on social media showed a dark-colored vehicle lodged inside a wooden structure. Hundreds of people stood behind yellow police tape as investigators examined the site.

The crash happened at a time when officials have begun loosening pandemic restrictions that limit hours of operation and capacity at bars and restaurants.

Outdoor dining structures, which became popular during the pandemic, have been struck by vehicles several times in recent months.

In August, a woman having lunch at a restaurant on Franklin Street in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, was injured when a car struck a barricade that slid into the woman. The driver drove off. The episode followed an accident three days earlier in which two vehicles collided on Second Avenue near 92nd Street on the Upper East Side and one of them careered into an outdoor seating area that was closed at the time. The driver and two people at the scene were treated for minor injuries.

In December, a driver lost control of a car that slammed into outdoor seating at a restaurant on Bailey Avenue in the Bronx. The restaurant was closed at the time. The police said the driver had lost consciousness.

Lew Serviss contributed reporting.

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