Drunk driver kills 7 when he hits a bus stop at 190 kph

Kremlin and Moscow Environs Aerial View

Evgeniya Chaykovskaya – Moscow News – themoscownews.com – September 24, 2012

Seven people were killed and four more were injured at a bus stop in Moscow when a car hit it at 190 km per hour.

The drunk man behind the wheel of a Toyota lost control of the car and crashed into a bus stop where people were waiting. Five of those killed were teenagers from an orphanage.

Deadly crash

The Toyota ploughed through the bus stop on Minskaya Ulitsa outside the Golden Keys estate, where Dmitry Medvedev owns a flat, at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Toyota Crown driver Alexander Maximov who has been drinking for two days before getting behind the wheel was taken to a hospital with suspected concussion and other wounds, the car’s passenger was also hospitalized, Interfax reported.

Maximov’s right-hand drive car hit the bus stop, and kept going for another 10 meters, dragging the metal construction and the people along.

One of the injured, Yelena Zagorodnaya, said the man did not even realise what he has done. “He was not all there,” she told Life News. “It was clear when he got out of the car. This face … I said ‘He’s drunk.’ And he looked around and said ‘What happened? Nothing happened.'”

Blood tests after the crash confirmed that the level of alcohol in Maximov’s blood was 1.5 per mil.

The Investigative Committee opened a criminal case, and if the driver is found guilty, he will spend up to nine years in prison.

The police said Maximov has been detained for traffic rules violations several times, and was caught drunk-driving twice after receiving his licence back.

The victims

Out of seven people who died on the spot, five were teenagers from an orphanage, aged 14-16, and the other two was their teacher and her husband.

Earlier on Saturday the kids together with the teacher took part in an awards ceremony for the Sixth Moscow Festival of Arts and Crafts for children and young people with disabilities My Vmeste, which took part in the Glory Museum on Poklonnaya Gora.

When the group did not return to the orphanage, the administration started looking for them and called numerous hospitals, where it received the horrible news.

Medvedev calls for tougher punishment

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev suggested increasing punishment for car crashes caused by drunk drivers.

“We’ve recently had a series of horrifying road accident, unfortunately, the majority of them were caused [by drivers] in a drunk state. In this way the picture is worse here than in any other country. United Russia deputies mentioned it today. Maybe it is worth considering a tougher criminal punishment for such crimes,” he said.

The last major car crash with a drunk driver involved happened in Moscow region in July, when a drunk woman killed five people walking by the side of the road, including a seven-year-old girl.

Yekaterina Zaul, 24, was detained and is on trial. She could spend nine years in jail.