Police: Mother, 2 children struck by car in West Orange

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A mother and her two small children are lucky to be alive after they were struck by a car while walking on a sidewalk in West Orange.

Rani Houlis tells News 12 New Jersey that hours later, she still feels panicked after watching the silver Honda ride up onto the sidewalk, striking the mother and her children.

"It was the scariest thing I've ever seen in my life. I still cannot believe that they were not killed on-site,” Houlis says.

David Mandelbaum also saw it happen.

"It just rolled through the red light and like in slow motion she just went across all traffic, jumped up the curb and the family was walking, I guess down Eagle Rock here,” he says.

West Orange police say the car, traveling west on Eagle Rock Avenue near the intersection of Forest Avenue, struck a mother with her 5-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son, who was in a stroller.

"The mother was thrown in the air. She had to be thrown straight up at least 5 to 7 feet and backward,” says Houlis. “The stroller was completely smushed together."

Houlis says that the mother was hysterical and that the 5-year-old was in shock.

"The two-year-old that was in the stroller. The stroller got folded up underneath the bumper, and it was a stroller where a car seat snaps into it, and the shell of that car seat protected that kid, because he was underneath the bumper practically, and then they pulled it out,” says Mandelbaum.

Police officers could be heard describing the injuries on the police radios.

"We got a complaint of pain to a leg and hip. We have a small child with abdominal pain. And the other child in the stroller, with a contusion to the head and some abdominal bruising,” an officer is heard saying.

"From watching it happen to seeing the actual victims, it was actually crazy that there was no blood and all you saw was hysterical crying,” says Houlis.

Police say the driver, mother and two children were taken to University Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

Police say that they believe that the driver had a medical emergency while behind the wheel.

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