A dozen people, mostly young women, have been injured after a station wagon crashed into a Sydney hijab shop days before the end of Ramadan.
Mobile phone and security camera video shows the wagon pushing a white sedan aside at traffic lights before racing through the intersection and ploughing into the Greenacre store about 3.15pm on Thursday.
Witnesses described the scene as “surreal”.
The male driver, 51, was conscious when arrested and remains under police guard in hospital.
“He’s only been briefly spoken to, he’s yet to be interview by detectives and crash investigators,” Assistant Commissioner Peter Thurtell told reporters on Thursday evening.
“I am aware he has some traffic matters. I’m unable to comment on any medical episode. There’s no information that’s been given to me that there’s been any medical episode.”
Three men and eight women – mostly aged 18 to 30 – inside or near the shop at the time were treated for minor injuries.
Two people with broken legs were carried out of the smashed shop.
They’re all in a stable condition, NSW Ambulance Acting Inspector Caitlyn Murphy said.
“Our paramedics were met with a very chaotic scene,” she told reporters.
“There was a large crowd of bystanders who were quite distressed.”
NSW Police said there is no indication the crash was terror-related.
The reason for the crash remains under investigation.
The driver of the white sedan was Abdul Jelani, the Seven Network reported.
“All of a sudden I saw this car come out of nowhere and hit other cars and then I get hit from the back,” Mr Jelani said.
“I locked my brakes and he just kept pushing and pushing. Then all of a sudden I ended up on that side of the road … and he ends up in the shop.”
Dairee frozen yoghurt manager Malik Islam was preparing for the nightly Ramadan trade when he heard people screaming – but he didn’t think it could be “as horrific as a car ploughing into a shop”.
“It actually ploughed into the centre of the shop, there were a lot of people trying to enter the shop to provide some support,” the witness told AAP.
Footage he saw showed the wagon “pushed that car out and flung straight across the intersection”.
“It was disturbing, it’s very surreal, you don’t expect it – it’s a very chaotic intersection normally,” Mr Islam said.
NSW Police initially said incorrectly that the vehicle which crashed into Hijab House was a Subaru SUV.