Seven people were killed, including several disabled teens, after a drunk driver ran his speeding car into a bus stop in the Russian capital.
The car plowed the bus stop and literally tore it out of the ground. However, this did not stop the out-of-control vehicle, with a speed 120 kilometers per hour. The car dragged the ruined bus stop for about 10 meters, pulling everyone who was waiting for the bus under it.
Seven people were killed at the scene and at least one person was injured.
Police have already identified all the bodies, but are not revealing the names of the dead in the interests of the investigation, the Moscow police press service said.
Due to the fact the information is undisclosed, there is uncertainty concerning the age of the victims.
According to the Moscow police version posted on their website, there are four adults and three teenagers.
However, there is a possibility that among the dead were two teachers at an assisted living facility – a wife and husband – and their five students, all minors.
The principal of the facility has told the Lifenews tabloid that all seven victims were “their people”. She said that they headed earlier in the day for the Moscow festival for disabled children and had not returned.
Moscow police have confirmed that officers who collected evidence from the crime scene found awards and drawing kits belonging to three teenage girls, aged 14, 15 and 16.
Lifenews name the person who survived the deadly accident as Muscovite Elena Zagorodnaya. It appears the car stopped just one meter before her. Elena shielded herself from smashed glass with bags. Witnesses rendered first aid and delivered her to hospital. She is now at home, but can barely walk due to leg trauma.
The driver, now responsible for seven deaths, sustained minor head injuries. He was relocated from the hospital to a police station for interrogation.
The 30-year-old driver has been detained at the scene and later confessed he was in a state of “alcoholic intoxication” at the time of the crash. In an interview with RIA Novosti, Aleksandr Maksimov said he did not exactly remember how much he consumed, but had been drinking for two days.
Several hours after his arrest, the driver was barely able to stand on his feet, was aggressive towards the police officer who was filming his detainment, tried to break free and threatened to smash the video camera, reported Interfax news agency.
Maksimov lost control of the vehicle and rammed into a bus stop after driving over the safe speed limit, investigators say.
“Trying to outrace the traffic flow moving in the same direction, he lost control of his car, hit the metal median strip and then smashed into a bus stop,” explained senior police investigator Aleksandr Syomushkin.
In 2010, he forfeited his driver’s license for driving under the influence of alcohol and got his papers back only in March this year. The blood alcohol limit for Russian drivers is zero.
A criminal case has been launched into the accident. The driver faces up to nine years in prison if convicted.
The tragedy occurred on a day, when Moscow, together with some 1,000 cities in 40 countries around the world, participated in "World Car-Free Day," encouraging walking, biking and public transportation.