CHATHAM, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A mother and her baby were pummeled by a falling tree branch in Chatham, New Jersey, while taking a stroll Friday.
Just before noon, emergency responders surrounded a massive branch lying in the middle of the sidewalk on Lincoln Avenue near Chatham Street.
“It’s so frightening. I mean, it’s scary,” neighbor Vibha Sharma said.
“There was a lot of activity with the police and the ambulance and the emergency squad, and I saw that the baby was being held by one of the EMTs,” neighbor Mary McNiff said.
The baby, just 6 months old, was hurt, along with the 46-year-old mother. Police say they were on their way home from church when they were hit by the limb.
It’s a block where many parents and children walk daily.
“[The mother] was on her back and they were trying to maneuver her or get her up,” McNiff said.
She says a good Samaritan rushed over to help.
“She got the branch off the stroller, which apparently was crushed, and, you know, she’s the real hero here,” McNiff said.
McNiff says the injured mother has lived in the area for years.
She also told CBS2’s Reena Roy the tree-lined street often has limbs fall, but no one has gotten hurt before. The big question is now, how did this one fall and who is responsible for it?
“I’m sure it was a freak accident,” neighbor Kshitiz Kapoor said. “I haven’t really heard of anyone getting hurt before this.”
“It fell from a higher height,” McNiff said. “It could’ve killed them, I think.”
Neighbors say workers did come by to trim the tree and clean up debris. In the meantime, officials say the mother is in serious condition, but both she and her baby are expected to be OK.