A bizarre scene of twisted metal intruded on a quiet block of Lombard Street in Society Hill late Thursday night after cops say a car took a turn too quickly and careened down the street, crashing into two parked cars before flipping.
Amazingly, cops said, no one was badly injured in the crash, which happened around 10:30 p.m. and left three cars, including the striking vehicle, badly damaged. Police at the scene, on Lombard Street between 3rd and 4th, said at least two of the vehicles appeared to be totaled.
The three occupants of the Dodge Charger that caused the accident got out of the car and fled the scene on foot, according to police and witnesses. Cops said the man believed to have been driving, who is from Camden, N.J., was arrested near Columbus Boulevard and two women who'd been in the car with him were caught closer to the scene. Police said they were unsure if the car belonged to the man arrested, but said it, too, was registered in Camden.
"I heard a large crash, like something I'd never heard before and came running down," said David Yuchnievicz, 22, who lives in a third-floor apartment on the block. He said he got downstairs in time to see the two women and man get out of the mangled Charger and take off running.
"That's nuts," Yuchnievicz said as he and his roommates watched cops cordon off the scene and talk to neighbors.
Police said they were unsure if alcohol or drugs played a role in the crash, and the driver was taken to be tested to determine whether he was under the influence. Cops at the scene said the trio told investigators that they were headed to a bar on South Street at the time of the accident.
The steps of one house on the block were damaged from one of the cars hitting it, but police said there didn't appear to be any structural damage.
Beverly Rears, whose red Pontiac Vibe had been parked on the block and ended up smashed on the sidewalk when the Charger slammed into it, stood wide-eyed surveying the damage with neighbors and her husband around 11 p.m.
"I don't know what you do, I never had this happen," Rears said, watching her husband unloaded their belongings from the back of the car.
"It's still a pain in the ass," she said when she learned the driver of the striking car had fled the scene but was arrested. "That guy is lucky he walked away."