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Pedestrians Leap to Safety After Van Careens Across Central Florida Beach

By Orlando Personal Injury Attorney on January 19, 2021

It is currently not clear if or how many people were injured in an incident involving an out-of-control car that took place on a beach in Cocoa Beach earlier this month. Reports from the Cocoa Beach Police Department indicated that it was close to 7:00 at night on Friday, January 15th, that a 39-year-old individual was behind the wheel of a Toyota van and driving down the eastern lanes of Minutemen Causeway before suddenly leaving the legal travel area and driving through an area supposedly closed off to traffic.

After traveling through this area for an unspecified distance, the driver of the van then left the paved area and entered the beach. While the reasons behind this decision remain a mystery, what is clear is that the sudden presence of a van driving along a pedestrian beach resulted in numerous people needing to leap out of the way of the oncoming vehicle. Although people began to place emergency calls to the police at the time, the driver continued on their trajectory along the beach for nearly two blocks before the sand caused the wheels to seize and the van to stop.

Shortly afterwards, officers with the Cocoa Beach Police Department reached the area.

When they arrived, they found the 39-year-old alone near the vehicle, which was packed with various objects presumed to belong to the driver. As the police apprehended the individual, he told them that it was not he who was driving the van but his cousin, and that this cousin had fled from the scene shortly after the van stopped. A preliminary investigation into the event did not disclose any evidence of this reported “cousin,” and the lack of footsteps leading away from the vehicle, as well as the van being so full of clothing and other items as to leave room for only one person led police to conclude that the narrative of the cousin was likely a fabrication.

The 39-year-old was arrested on the scene and charged on numerous accounts including reckless driving and driving with a suspended license. No injuries were reported at the initial scene.


James O. Cunningham

James O. CunninghamSince 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.

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