Saitama cops arrest elderly driver after accident leaves 1 dead, 5 hurt

Saitama police arrested an elderly woman following an accident in a parking lot in Iruma City resulted on one fatality and five injuries
Saitama police arrested an elderly woman following an accident in a parking lot in Iruma City resulted on one fatality and five injuries (TBS News)

SAITAMA (TR) – An elderly female driver mistook the accelerator for the brakes and sped into pedestrians in Iruma City on Friday, killing one person and injuring five, reports TBS News (Apr. 22).

At around 8 p.m., a car driven by Ritsuko Chiba, 76, collided with another vehicle in a parking lot of a shopping mall. Yoshiko Ichikawa, 53, who was in the other vehicle, died in the accident while three other women in the same car suffered injuries.

Chiba, who has been charged with negligent driving resulting in injury and death, admits to the allegations. Her 82-year-old husband, who was in the passenger seat of her car, suffered broken ribs. The suspect was uninjured.

“I realized too late that there was a car in front of me, and I mistook the accelerator for the brakes,” the Nishinippon Shimbun (Apr. 22) quoted Chiba as telling police.

A witness said they heard a loud sound, similar to the engine of a race car. “With such revving, you’d think she was going at least 100 kilometers an hour, the witness said. “The sound of the crash was huge.”

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