9-year-old driver critical after crash

NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA - October 3, 2011

The accident happened around 9:30 a.m. in the northbound outer lanes of Roosevelt Boulevard near Rhawn Street.

"We were over raking the leaves at my job and all of a sudden a kid was speeding up the street," said David Balton, an witness at the scene.

According to police, the vehicle flipped when the boy drove into a tree.

"I don't know how he made it. When the car flipped it flipped," said Balton.

Several witnesses tell Action News they were working at a nearby carwash when they saw the terrible crash.

Anthony Canalis called 911 and ran over.

"I saw the car veer out of control, hit the tree, and flip a couple times in the air. The car was smoking," said Canalis.

When authorities arrived, they discovered the young boy behind the wheel conscious but in shock.

The victim suffered head injuries and was taken to St. Christopher's Hospital. He is listed in critical but stable condition.

People in the area were stunned that a child was driving to begin with.

"It's a busy road. All we can say is that this is an example that we need to be cautious when we have [car] keys. I hope he's alright," said Francisco Cortez.

No one else was injured in the crash.

So far no word on how far the child drove, or where his parents were at the time.

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