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Baby dies, 17 injured after car hits crowd on Rio boardwalk

January 19, 2018

Firefighters give the first aid to people that were hurt after a car drove into the crowded seaside boardwalk along Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Jan. 18, 2018. Military police said on Twitter that at least 11 people were injured and that the driver has been taken into custody. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A motorist who drove into a crowded boardwalk along Rio’s famed Copacabana beach killed a baby and injured 17 people, Brazilian authorities said Friday.

Rio de Janeiro’s municipal health department reported that an Australian was among those hurt in the Thursday night incident. The 68-year-old was in serious condition and breathing with the help of a respirator.

The Australian Embassy initially said it was not aware any of its citizens was hurt, but the Department of Foreign Affairs later said in a statement that it was urgently consulting with Brazilian officials to determine if an Australian had been injured.

Eight other people remain hospitalized, many with broken bones. At least three children were among the injured, and the state health department confirmed the death of a baby girl.

The boardwalk was crowded on a hot summer night when the car jumped the curb, crossed the wide sidewalk and came to a stop in the sand.

Police have said it was not a terrorist attack and have arrested the driver. The driver told police he had not been drinking but lost control of his car. He also told them he has epilepsy.

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