Police believe the driver of an SUV accidentally hit the gas instead of the brake when he hit a pedestrian, another vehicle and then merchandise at the Costco store on Telegraph Road.

Police believe the driver of an SUV accidentally hit the gas instead of the brake when he hit a pedestrian, another vehicle and then merchandise at the Costco store on Telegraph Road.

Photo provided by Sgt. Dan Brown, of the Bloomfield Township Police Department


Senior hits pedestrian in Costco lot

By: Tiffany Esshaki | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published May 24, 2019

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BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP — An 84-year-old Clarkston man is expected to fully recover after being struck by a vehicle in a parking lot, according to police.

Sgt. Dan Brown, of the Bloomfield Township Police Department, said the man was walking in the parking lot of Costco, 2343 S. Telegraph Road, just before 2:30 p.m. May 11 when he was hit by another driver backing out of a parking space.

Brown said that the driver, an 80-year-old Southfield man, is believed to have accidentally accelerated his car when he meant to press the brake.

“It sounds like he totally mistook the gas for the brake, which is, unfortunately, common,” Brown said. “Most of the time when you see a vehicle that’s crashed into the window of a party store or bank, that’s what happened.”

According to the Storefront Safety Council, an advocacy group that researches auto crashes into buildings, about 60 vehicles crash into a building every day across the country. Those accidents are typically caused by driver/pedal error, along with poorly designed parking lots. The result is more than 4,000 injuries and even 500 deaths annually in the United States.

The Clarkston man was transported to a nearby hospital and was treated for injuries to his arm and hand, but he is expected to be fine. In addition to hitting a pedestrian with his car, the driver ran into another vehicle — a white Volvo driven by a 78-year-old woman — and continued into the store’s vestibule, where plants were displayed for sale.  

“It’s just a mistake that, fortunately, didn’t end horribly,” Brown said. “At a Costco on a Saturday, there could’ve been 20 people run over. Thank God that wasn’t the case.”

The Southfield man was issued a citation for reckless driving. Representatives from the Costco Corp. did not respond to calls before press time, and it’s unknown whether the driver will be held responsible for product damages. 

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