ORADELL, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A crane operator lost control and crashed onto several parked cars in the parking lot of the Oradell Health Care Center in New Jersey Wednesday.
As CBS2’s Christine Sloan reported, the rear-ends of a minivan and another vehicle were completely crushed by the weight of the crane.
“I was pulling into this parking lot here. I don’t know why, I just happened to look in this direction, and there was a big truck coming down the turn here and it went to make a left and didn’t make it; it was going too fast and it just turned over,” said witness Dr. Doug Zimmel.
It happened on Soldier Hill Road just as the driver approached busy Kinderkamack Road in Oradell.
The crane is so massive, crews needed to bring in heavy-duty tow trucks to upright it.
Accident investigators said it was a miracle that no one was injured.
“He did a good job. He came down and went through a major intersection where if he had turned and flipped there, it could have been disastrous,” said Oradell Fire Chief Dan Nywening. “He actually dumped the truck on purpose to avoid hitting the telephone pole and going into the reservoir or rail road tracks.”
“(Sloan: So what did the driver tell you happened here?) Preliminary investigation right now is that there was some kind of equipment failure on his way down the hill,” said Oradell Police Department Lt. Richard Zdanowicz.
Nearly 30 gallons of diesel fuel leaked onto the ground, but officials said none of it got into catch basins or the reservoir.
The health care center wouldn’t say who owns the damaged cars, Sloan reported.
Police are investigating if brake failure caused the crane to lose control. They said the fact that he crashed in the parking lot saved a lot of lives.
The driver of the crane won’t be issued a summons, police said.