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Death as vehicle hits scooter and crashes into outdoor catering facility in Queens

A 29-year-old man was fatally injured Thursday night when a vehicle collided with the scooter he was driving and then crashed into an open-air catering structure in a busy block of Astoria , in Queens, according to a spokesperson for the New York Police Department.

The man on the scooter, whose name has not been released, was taken to Mount Sinai Queens and pronounced dead, police said.

The driver of the vehicle, a woman of around 50, was taken to Elmhurst Hospital, said the police. A third person, whose location at the time of the crash was unclear, was also taken to Mount Sinai Queens, firefighters said. Their terms were not immediately available.

Investigators were trying to determine what led to the crash. A witness told a reporter at the scene that the driver of the vehicle was traveling “well over 50 miles an hour” before crashing into the dining room.

The accident happened just before 8 p.m. Thursday at the corner of 35th Street and Ditmars Boulevard, in a commercial section of the neighborhood known for its sidewalk cafes and restaurants.

A video circulating on social media showed a dark-colored vehicle housed inside a wooden structure. Hundreds of people stood behind yellow police tape as investigators surveyed the site.

The accident came at a time when authorities began to ease pandemic restrictions that limit the hours of operation and the capacity of bars and restaurants.

Outdoor dining structures, which became popular during the pandemic, have been struck by vehicles on several occasions in recent months.

In August, a woman eating lunch at a Franklin Street restaurant in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, was injured when a car hit a barricade that slid into the woman. The driver is gone. The episode follows a crash three days earlier in which two vehicles collided on Second Avenue near 92nd Street on the Upper East Side and one of them made a career out of a seating area exterior which was closed at the time. The driver and two people at the scene were treated for minor injuries.

In December, a driver lost control of a car that crashed into a patio at a restaurant on Bailey Avenue in the Bronx. The restaurant was closed at the time. Police said the driver was unconscious.

Lew Serviss contributed reporting.

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