NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A 40-year-old woman has died after being struck by a car while crossing the street in Downtown Brooklyn.
The crash happened shortly before 9:30 a.m. Wednesday at the intersection of Pearl and Willoughby streets.
The 81-year-old man behind the wheel of an SUV with North Carolina plates hit the woman as she was attempting to cross Pearl Street mid-block.
The SUV then crashed through construction fencing and metal barriers with such force, it sent a fire hydrant flying across the busy pedestrian walkway between Adams and Jay Streets.
“We heard a car coming straight, fast and heard two big booms. Had to have been 60 miles an hour,” said witness Anthony Rayside.
“We just seen the lady laying there on the floor, non-responsive. It’s a very scary thing,” witness Kenny Fritz said. “He was out of it.”
Witnesses told CBS2’s Alice Gainer the 81-year-old man behind the wheel was stuck in the car and had to be taken out by first responders.
“We was calling 911. We was trying to check, there’s another young lady, they were trying to check if she was breathing. She was trying to see if there was any movement. There was nothing, nothing at all,” said witness Vinny Gagnon.
The woman who was killed has been identified as 40-year-old Tracy Belgrave. She was Deputy CIO for Finance and Administration for New York City’s Department of Education. Her office was nearby.
Colleagues are shocked because the incident occurred on a dead end street and say there aren’t a lot of cars driving on that road.
“I just saw one of my colleagues she was crying like crazy and saying she didn’t make it,” said colleague Reasat Chowdhury. “She was always smiling. I mean I saw her maybe like two days ago and yeah, people are sad.”
“Tracy was beloved by all of her colleagues, and I’m devastated by this tragic loss for the DOE community,” the schools chancellor said in a statement.
So far there have been no charges filed against the driver. The investigation is ongoing.
Grief counselors are being made available to DOE staff.