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Three hurt as car smashes into Givatayim pub

Driver apparently lost control while turning, jumping onto sidewalk and into outdoor area used by Marlen

A motorist drove his car into a pub in the Tel Aviv suburb of Givatayim early Tuesday after apparently losing control of the vehicle.

Three people were injured in the incident, including the driver, according to reports in Hebrew-language media. The extent of their injuries was not immediately clear, but video showed one person with a neck brace being wheeled into an ambulance on a stretcher.

The crash occurred shortly after midnight at Marlen, a popular bar and restaurant with sidewalk seating. The car could be seen stopped halfway into an outdoor service area.

A bystander told the Kan public broadcaster that the car appeared to be trying to turn around when it seemingly lost control and was unable to brake, jumping onto the sidewalk and into the pub.

“It’s lucky there aren’t more people here at this hour, there weren’t many people,” he said.

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“There were screams and at first we thought it was a terror attack,” before the driver emerged and signaled that they didn’t intend harm, the bystander said.

מספר נפגעים בתאונה לאחר שרכב נכנס לתוך מסעדה

— Asslan Khalil (@KhalilAsslan) September 4, 2023

Some bystanders claimed the driver left the scene, but United Hatzala said they were transported to a hospital, the Ynet news site reported. There was no immediate comment from police.

There have been dozens of car-ramming attacks against Israelis over recent decades, many of them deadly, including a truck attack on off-duty soldiers walking on the Israeli side of a West Bank checkpoint last week. Maxim Molchanov, a serviceman killed in that attack, is set to be buried later Tuesday.

In some instances, families of alleged attackers have claimed the so-called rammings were actually cases of drivers losing control.