A Lord & Taylor employee was hit by a car while crossing North Avenue around noon on Wednesday.
Police officials say that the female employee, whose name was not released, was three quarters of the way across North Avenue, headed to the store from the employee parking lot next to the real estate office across the street, when she was hit by a maroon Ford Taurus driving east along North Avenue. The employee was thrown east-bound on North Avenue and the car came to a stop in the roadway.
Police Captain David Wayman, who was on the scene, said the victim was conscious when emergency services arrived. An unidentified person, who saw the victim after the accident, said the victim appeared to be bleeding in the roadway. The victim was transported to University Hospital in Newark, a trauma center routinely used for victims of such accidents. Wayman said the victim appeared to be injured and possibly has broken bones. He said that while he is not a medical professional, the victim did not look to have sustained life-threatening injuries in the accident.
"I don't believe it is life-threatening," Wayman said.
Wayman said police are currently investigating the cause of the accident and that the driver of the Taurus has been cooperating with police in the investigation. A flat bed truck arrived around 1:15 p.m. to transport the Taurus, which sustained a smashed windshield along with other dents on the hood to the police impound lot.
North Avenue, between East Broad Street and the end of Lord & Taylor, was blocked off in order to allow for the investigation to be conducted. The victim's shoe could be seen lying in the street in front of the Taurus, before being placed into a police evidence bag. The victim's purse was lying near the cross walk where she was struck, several contents spilled onto the street, including a BlackBerry, which went off at one point while police were investigating. The call went unanswered.
A group of Lord & Taylor employees gathered on the steps of the store to watch the investigation unfold. They said they had not seen the accident occur. A Lord & Taylor manager said that the store, and its employees, would have no comment about the accident at this time and asked for privacy from the Westfield community.
The accident occurred in the same crosswalk where a Lord & Taylor employee was killed after being hit by a car in December 2003. That accident spurred the county to install a lighted crosswalk at the intersection in hopes of preventing further accidents. The crosswalk is considered one of the more dangerous in town by residents.