At some point, installing sturdier railing might be a good idea for Austin’s Littlefield Parking Garage. The same garage we live-streamed less than a year ago as a car was dangling from its side just had a BMW fall from its seventh floor, reports the Austin American-Statesman. The driver was taken to a local hospital for treatment of serious but non-life-threatening injuries from the fall.
A woman’s BMW 4-series hardtop convertible fell from the seventh floor of the nine-floor garage around 8:28 a.m., Austin-Travis County EMS officials told the Statesman. The woman is in her 30s.
Unfortunately, the car was not held off the ground by the cables the parking garage uses for railing, as the cables did for the truck last September. The BMW landed on the rear of an SUV that that was parked in an alley between Fifth and Sixth Streets, severely injuring the woman inside, reports KXAN.
William Birch was parking the SUV to check on a construction project at the time of the crash, and told KXAN:
My window was down and I heard something really loud and abnormal, so I started driving forward and the vehicle landed on the backside of my Tahoe.
The Tahoe’s rear windows were blown out by the impact, although the truck is still driveable. Had Birch not moved forward, the car would have fallen directly on Birch’s truck.
The Austin American-Statesman has a gallery of photos from the crash here, showing the late-model BMW hardtop convertible getting flipped back off of its roof.
The crash also ruptured a gas line in the process that serves the downtown Austin area, per KXAN, however, crews have been able to shut off the gas as the crash is cleared from the site.
UPDATE [7/14]: Littlefield Garage owners GTT Parking LP released a statement to Austin Business Journal on the second incident within a year at the same garage, saying that these have been the only incidents of their kind the garage has experienced in its 38 years of operation. Additionally, they noted that both a structural engineer hired by the garage as well as the City of Austin were satisfied with the design and repair of their safety barriers after the previous incident.
You can read their statement in full here.