Story updated 10/9/2011 at 2:12am
Two cars were totalled this evening in a car accident at the intersection of Broadway and Cayuga in Santa Cruz.
At approximately 5:15p.m., a black Subaru attempted to cross the street at the intersection. As the Subaru crossed, a white Camaro, unable to brake in time, struck the right side of the Subaru going approximately 15-20 mph. Alcohol does not appear to have been involved with the accident.
Brad Martin, the driver of the white Camaro, said the Subaru caught him by surprise.
“I wasn’t even going that fast when the guy suddenly decided to rush across the street,” Martin said. “I didn’t even hit the brake it happened so quick. I just simply didn’t see him.”
The Subaru then flipped approximately one and a half times before settling on its left side next to a street stop sign. While there have been no serious injuries reported, Martin’s fiancee, Fawn Pearl, who was a passenger in the white Camaro, was taken away by ambulance from the scene.
“We were [in Santa Cruz] for this engagement/birthday party thing,” Martin said. “This is a great way to start the weekend.”
Motioning to the police officers nearby while taking a drag from his cigarette, Martin moved for his phone to contact his insurance company.
“It was [the Subraru driver’s] fault. At least [the police] say it was his fault,” Martin said.
By about 5:20p.m., police and firemen had the situation under control, taking down witness statements and removing the vehicles from obstructing the street intersection. Traffic along Broadway began to back up, and vehicles heading southbound on Cayuga had to be turned around.
Geoff Llewellyn, driving his way home with his friends Austin Wood and Katie Humphreys, witnessed the accident play out in front of him.
“We were turning left onto Cayuga when we saw the car get hit in front of us.” Llewellyn said. “It was crazy.”
Still startled by the suddenness of the crash, Humphreys counted herself and her friends lucky they were not the ones hit. Pointing over at the Subaru, still laying on its side surrounded by broken glass and personal items of the driver inside, Humphreys judged they narrowly avoided getting hit by the once airborne wreck.
“I mean, we were lucky [the Subaru] was hit straight on its broadside,” Humphreys said. “If the car had hit the front side even a little bit more, it probably would have hit us.”
Local resident Debbie Justice believes that the accident was not an isolated incident. Justice said that ever since Soquel Street had one of its lanes closed, the uptick in redirected traffic to Boadway has led to more accidents.
“This intersection is particularly bad,” Justice said. “It gets narrower from one side of Broadway to the other as you cross Cayuga. I’m constantly seeing accidents happen here.”
Justice, who did not see the crash happen but rushed to the scene after hearing it from her home less than a block away, is worried about how close the intersection is to the Gault Elementary School, located about a block away on Seabright.
“One day one of these kids are going to get hit walking or bicycling to school,” Justice said. “They won’t see it coming. The city’s got to start considering this.”