A disturbing video has captured the moment a woman flipped over open sidewalk cellar doors in New Jersey — and plunged six feet into the basement below.
According to NY Post, the unidentified 67-year-old woman was walking down a street in Plainfield, N.J. around noon on Thursday when she approached the open doors, the video shows. Instead of turning to avoid them, she kept walking and toppled head-first over the wide-open grate, video shows.
Authorities told ABC that the woman appeared to be texting — and distracted by her phone — when she took the fall.
But one of the woman’s sons, who did not want his name used, told The Post that his mother is legally blind and has trouble with blended colors, such as the gray shades of the pavement and the cellar doors. She may not have been able to tell the difference between the two, he said.
“If you looked at the video, [the color of the doors] looked exactly the same as the concrete,” he said.
He told CBS that his mom is also diabetic.
“She regularly takes on schedule her meals and checks her sugar,” he told the station. “As far as I was told, when she was walking down the street, she felt a little nauseous in a sense, and looked at her phone to see what time it was.”
He told The Post that his mother was not using her phone for an extended period of time — and that the device was “totally not part of the case.”
He declined to comment further, saying the family was seeking legal counsel.
The woman’s other son, Michael Hope, posted on Facebook that his mom was not texting.
“My mother has poor eyesight from cataracts and multiple surgeries,” he wrote in a posting that has since been removed. “She’s a strong woman who likes to do things on her own like going out for a walk even with her disabilities. Anyone who has met my mom knows this.”
“REGARDLESS of phone or no phone,” he added, “THIS SHOULDNT HAPPEN TO ANYONE.”
Moments after the plunge, crews arrived and rescued the woman – pulling her out of the basement on a stretcher. She was seriously hurt, but is now in stable condition, authorities told CBS.
Hope wrote that his mother is “doing well and joking around while talking on the phone.”
“I guess I’m stunt woman now,” he said his mother quipped.
Watch the video below: