A 68-year-old woman motorist rolled out of the driver’s seat of her Jeep Cherokee Thursday evening as she was backing out of her driveway onto Woodward Avenue, falling on the roadway before getting run over by her own vehicle.
Catharina Klaverstijn was having a hard time breathing while being treated on the side of the road by medics prior to being transported by ambulance to an area hospital.
One witness told officers that the front wheel caught her from the left side of the pelvis and ran up and over her right shoulder. That was before a 19-year-old Good Samaritan, Sabrina Cruz, jumped out of the passenger side of the vehicle she was in and ran to take control of the runaway car, jumping into the driver’s seat. She brought it to a stop two rows back in an almond orchard adjacent to the rural Klaverstijn home.
Cruz was riding in an eastbound Ford Windstar driven by friend John Sandoval, 21, when they slowed after seeing the car backing out of the driveway.
“She just rolled out of the driver’s side,” Cruz said, adding that the vehicle turned in a counterclockwise arc pattern with its door striking the front of their car as they saw it bounce and continue on backwards. She noted that the woman had fallen near the white fog line on the right side of the roadway and then crawled to the edge of the road and onto the dirt of the orchard.
Another witness was quoted as saying that the injured driver got up and tried to run after the car, but fell back to the ground in pain. The Jeep’s door had been sprung out away from the car, apparently by the impact with Sandoval’s minivan.
The teen said she ran to the woman and tried to comfort her as Sandoval called 911 on his cell phone. Cruz continued, saying that she had run to the house at the end of the driveway and told a family member that the woman had been run over by her car. She said he brought a pillow and blanket and went to her side.
The young couple had been going to visit the young woman’s grandmother who lives farther down Woodward Avenue. She said she had never been involved in anything like that before in having to help someone definitely in need.