Caught on camera: Onlookers injured in demolition derby mishap

Driver ran over his father at Mountain Springs Arena in Shartlesville.

Caught on camera: Onlookers hurt in demolition derby mishap

SHARTLESVILLE, Pa. - An evening of fun took a scary turn when a car was pushed into a crowd of fans at a demolition derby in Berks County.

Two people were sent to the hospital and several others were injured following the crash.

The driver of the car ran over his own father after he careened out of control at Mountain Springs Arena in Shartlesville, said officials.

"It was complete shock and everyone was screaming, it was crazy," said Chrissy Stout, who recorded video of the accident with her cell phone.

Stout said it happened Saturday night during the second heat as she was sitting in the stands with her two young kids.

"I was in shock. It really was a shock, and I didn't expect to see all that," said Stout, who added it was her first time at the derby.

According to officials, the youth class, which is drivers 14- to 16-years-old, was behind the wheel at the time. First responders ran to the scene after the car was hit from behind and went out the entrance.

"We never want to see anything like this, but it's just something that is unfortunate," said Rich Miller, who owns the arena. "It happened and it could have been a lot worse."

Miller has owned the arena for 41 years. He said he has seen his share of vehicle fires and crashes, but nothing like what happened Saturday night.

"Of course, you're running an automotive vehicle, so anything can happen," said Miller.

The driver claimed his throttle got stuck after he was rammed. He ran into several people, but the person who was injured the most was his own father. He underwent surgery Monday for a broken ankle. An arena worker was released from the hospital Saturday night, and several others were treated on scene for scrapes and bruises.

Miller called it a freak accident. Now, he plans on closing off the opening at the entrance and will not allow parents in the demo pit to prevent this from happening again.

"Maybe for the youth classes we will have to start blocking that off, but I think it could have been a little bit of inexperience," said Miller.

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