MIAMI (WSVN) - Two runners were struck by a tire, Monday morning, while jogging on the Rickenbacker Causeway.
According to officials, a tractor-trailer was traveling westbound on the Rickenbacker Causeway when, for an unknown reason, it lost two, 200-pound tires.
One landed inside of a parking lot, in the westbound lanes, while the second tire bounced into the eastbound lane, hitting the runners, who are engaged. The tractor-trailer eventually stopped as it was about to exit the Rickenbacker Causeway.
Stephanie Hilzinger was knocked unconscious, and her fiancé, Fernando Muñoz, who happens to be a dentist who specializes in anesthesiology, suffered minor injuries. Despite his injuries, he immediately jumped to her aid and administered CPR.
“Her fiancé, who we understand is a doctor, was also struck,” said Miami Fire Rescue Capt. Ignatius Carroll Jr. “When he came around, he saw her on the ground, not moving. That’s when he quickly stepped into action. Obviously, her fiancé being a doctor, being able to jump into action and perform life-saving efforts definitely helped her a whole lot.”
Hilzinger was transported by ground to Ryder Trauma Center where she remains in critical but stable condition.
The driver of the tractor-trailer said he did not know how or why his tires went flying across traffic. “I didn’t know,” said the driver. “I was coming from over there, and a lady came up to me saying I had a problem with the tire and that I hit a lady over there.”
One runner was shocked to hear about the accident. “That’s horrendous,” she said. “I’m here a couple of times a week, and it’s always crowded, but when a wheel comes off a truck, that’s quite exceptional. Everyone knows this area is not safe to bike, to walk.”
Her family is flying in from Ecuador to be by her side.
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