Talk about freak accidents.
A Pennsylvania woman visiting Maryland’s Ocean City was impaled in the chest when an unattended beach umbrella pierced into her body following a massive gust of wind, according to authorities familiar with the matter.
Ocean City spokeswoman Jessica Waters said the incident happened on Sunday afternoon when a rental umbrella, which should have been returned to the stand, flew across a few meters and impaled the 46-year-old woman. Fellow beach goers immediately alerted Beach Patrol Captain Butch Arbin about the bizarre incident. Paramedics soon arrived on the scene, and although they removed some part of the umbrella pole at the spot by cutting it using tools, they didn’t remove it completely for fear of doing more damage to the woman.
She was then carried in a Maryland State Police aviation helicopter to Peninsula Regional Medical Center, where her condition remains unknown. However, authorities have said that the woman remains out of danger, even as several scans are being conducted on her to see if smaller pieces of the pole might be deep inside her chest.
Meanwhile, beachgoers secured the umbrella with the help of Arbin so that it wouldn’t do more harm to others, reported ABC’s Maryland affiliate.
Remarkably enough, this is the second time within a week that such a freak accident has happened. As the Inquisitr reported just this past Tuesday, a British tourist to the U.S. was impaled in the ankle when an unexpected gust of wind made the sunbathing women its unsuspecting victim at Jersey’s Seaside Heights.
“It was a beautiful day and a gust of wind blew the umbrella,” Margaret Reynolds, 67, told reporters, refusing to blame her injury on anyone and calling it an “accident.”
“A really strong gust of wind knocked some umbrellas around and one of them flew into the lady. As soon as it happened, she screamed, ‘My leg!'” a witness had said about the freak accident.
But while fellow beachgoers and paramedics made certain Reynolds didn’t lose too much blood, there was never any serious danger because the British woman had been impaled in the ankle. However, the Pennsylvania woman’s condition is definitely worse since the umbrella pole pierced her right in the chest.
Moreover, two such accidents in a week show that unattended umbrellas at the beach are an unwanted menace. Social media users said that umbrella rental owners, as well as beachgoers, must ensure that no umbrella is left unsecured to prevent such future accidents.