Horrifying before-and-after videos show the sudden sidewalk death of two buddies walking and talking along a Manhattan street as a car collides with another vehicle before it jumps the curb at full speed and tragically wipes them out.
David Fernandez and Joel Adames saw the out-of-control Subaru bearing down on them milliseconds before it hit them and launched them into a storefront near the corner of 207th St. and Sherman Ave. in Inwood early Wednesday morning.
They had no no time at all to dodge the speeding car. They were barely able to raise their hands in a futile final act before their lives were swiftly ended.
Surveillance video shows Fernandez, 40, and Adames, 31, walking along the sidewalk just after 4 a.m. They veer toward the curb, still talking, and just as they step off the curb under a traffic light near the crosswalk, nearly 3,000 pounds of disaster strikes.
In less than the time it takes to blink, the men are hurled across the sidewalk into a storefront gate, where the occupied vehicle makes a final spin. One man’s arm slowly moves, and then they are both forever still.
Equally-disturbing cell phone video shows the chaotic aftermath seconds later of cops rushing to the scene, horrified pedestrians, twisted metal and lots of blood. Their bodies were twisted at awkward angles.
“Back up, back up,” first responders repeated as shocked onlookers milled about.
“We need multiple buses,” one officer said, a call for several ambulances for men on the ground, and the survivors in the cars.
People who knew both men said Fernandez, a barber, had just given Adames a haircut, and the two were walking from the barbershop and talking when the collision occurred.
Residents said speeding is a problem in the neighborhood.
Danny Harris, executive director of Transportation Alternatives, said streets need to be redesigned, and the red-light camera program needs to be expanded to cover more intersections.
Harris said that over the last five years, 36 people have been injured in traffic incidents at that intersection, including 12 pedestrians and two cyclists.
“Right now, state law only allows red light cameras at 1% of signalized intersections in all five boroughs,” Harris said. “This restriction is deadly, and we demand that Albany legislators lift the limits on the red light camera program to start saving lives.”