5 People In Hospital After Alden Car Crash

July 12, 2011 Updated Jul 12, 2011 at 5:21 PM EDT

By Jennifer Stanonis

July 12, 2011 Updated Jul 12, 2011 at 5:21 PM EDT

{ALDEN, NY (WKBW) -- Five people were taken to Erie County Medical Center after two cars crash in the Town of Alden. One vehicle was forced toward a house, just missing it, shown by the tire tracks. That van then almost hit another home but was stopped by a tree. "It just missed hitting the house... came across the driveway...airbag did not go off," Glenna Tichy, a resident in one of the homes, said. "I looked out my window and I see all this smoke and I quickly ran out to see what was going on...the van here, the woman was hurt so we called 911 right away."

The driver of the mini-van, Ethel Erny of Alden, was one of five people injured in the accident on Broadway near Austin Street late Tuesday morning. The four other people were in the car that was hit. Erny had to be extricated by emergency crews. She had an apparent broken leg but was conscious and alert. "The jaws of life had to cut her out, she couldn't get out," Tichy said. "Little scary but we're glad she didn't hit the house over there."

The Erie County Sheriff's Office says the van was going eastbound on Broadway and crossed into the center turning lane, hitting another vehicle preparing to turn left into the Tops Plaza. At this time it is unknown what caused Erny to cross into the center turning lane.

Officials say the five people taken to the hospital are suffering from non-life threatening injuries. The driver of the van is being issued traffic tickets for her violations in this accident.