BY ETHAN FORMAN
---- — DANVERS — An 83-year-old woman wound up dangling upside down by her seat belt but escaped serious injury after the Toyota Camry she was operating hit an SUV, flipped on its roof and came to a rest on a traffic island in front of Danvers Town Hall yesterday afternoon, police said.
Police, an ambulance crew from Lyons Ambulance and firefighters from Engine 3 extricated the woman and placed her on a stretcher for transport to Beverly Hospital after the car wound up on the traffic island, at the intersection of Holten, Sylvan, Ash and Elm streets.
Radio reports and witnesses described the woman as conscious, alert and talking.
Those who were first on scene found her “seat-belted and hanging upside down from her car when we arrived,” said Sgt. William Carleton. “Seat belts save lives,” he added.
Police identified the driver of the Camry as Mary DeLuca, 83, of Danvers. A Beverly Hospital spokesperson said last night DeLuca had already been discharged from the emergency room.
The woman had been heading east on Holten Street in the direction of Sylvan and Elm streets around 2:25 p.m. when the crash occurred. The investigation into the accident and whether any charges might be filed is still ongoing, according to information from Sgt. David Joyce.
The drivers of two other cars involved in the accident said they were not sure how the Camry wound up on its roof. They were not injured. They said the Camry rear-ended a black BMW SUV, which was then pushed into a black Ford Flex first in line at the intersection of Holten and Sylvan streets.
“I was at a stop and Brian (Billert of Danvers) was behind me and we don’t know where she came from,” said Lisa Romano, who was operating a Ford Flex SUV. “She flipped and hit Brian’s car, we can’t figure it out.”
Both Romano and Billert got out of their vehicles in confusion, not realizing at first that a car had hit them and flipped.
Billert went to the Camry to help the woman, Romano said.
“She was conscious, she was talking,” said Romano, who said she knows the woman’s family in Danvers.
“I didn’t try to get her out,” Billert said. “I just wanted to make sure she was conscious, alert and awake and she was OK. She was very aware. She gave us a name and a number. We had someone who was behind us, they called 911.”
Al’s Auto attached two cables to the sedan to roll it off the island and back on its tires. Traffic had been diverted on Holten Street as the scene was cleared, but there were no significant backups as a result of the incident.
Staff writer Ethan Forman can be reached at 978-338-2673, by email at email@example.com or on Twitter at @DanverSalemNews.