A woman injured from an SUV that crashed into an outdoor dining area of a Chinese restaurant in San Jose, California has been pronounced dead.
The incident, caught on surveillance footage on Sunday, sent seven others to the hospital, one of which remains in critical condition.
The driver was a 69-year-old man who allegedly used the accelerator instead of the brake while trying to park his 2000 Toyota 4Runner at the Grand Century Plaza.
As a result, the vehicle plowed into outdoor tables set up by Dynasty Chinese Seafood Restaurant, where dozens had been eating lunch.
Mall surveillance video obtained by @KPIXtv shows the SUV jumping two curbs, crossing 4 lanes of traffic, before plowing into outdoor diners at Dynasty Chinese Seafood Restaurant. 2 diners are in critical. SJPD says the 69-year-old driver used the accelerator instead of the brake pic.twitter.com/aporE5GoGA
— Betty Yu (@BettyKPIX) October 13, 2020
Police announced the woman’s passing on Tuesday after doctors determined that her brain activity had ceased, according to ABC 7.
Under California law, an individual is declared dead if they have sustained either (1) “irreversible cessation of circulatory and respiratory functions” or (2) “irreversible cessation of all functions of the entire brain, including the brain stem.”
Dynasty does not have the permit to offer outdoor dining through San Jose’s Al Fresco program, which was launched in June to help businesses — particularly restaurants — cope under coronavirus quarantine orders. The application process, officials say, is easy.
“This restaurant had not taken advantage of registering with the program,” said Nanci Klein, director of the Economic Development Office, according to KPIX 5. “It wasn’t a situation where we had the opportunity to work with them directly.”
The program allows restaurants to take over parking lots, close parts of streets and occupy areas of public parks to make space for outdoor services. They are also given access to free metal railings and concrete barriers upon request.
“[This is] not to say that a registration would have prevented someone from driving into people,” Elisabeth Handler, a spokesperson for the office, told The Mercury News. “[But] it’s definitely a heads up that we need to look at this more closely and there’s meeting currently going on about it.”
— San Jose Police Media Relations (@SJPD_PIO) October 13, 2020
An investigation into the crash continues. The elderly driver, believed to be in “medical distress” at the time of the incident, has not been charged.
The woman’s passing marks San Jose’s 40th traffic death of the year. Before her, a man died after getting into a similar crash less than six hours later.
Feature Image Screenshots via X Code