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Couple Narrowly Escapes When Bricks Fall From Forest Hills, Queens Building

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Panic erupted on a Queens sidewalk earlier this week, when bricks rained down and barely missed two passing pedestrians.

As CBS2's Jessica Schneider reported, the pile of bricks was still sitting on the side of the street in Forest Hills, Queens three days later. The weight of the bricks could easily have seriously injured people as they fell from two floors up.

One couple was having what began as a leisurely Sunday night stroll on Austin Street. The stroll turned into a jolt of panic as the pile of bricks from a café came plunging to the ground behind them – missing them by just feet and a few seconds as they took off running.

"People were panicked," said Gabriel Olivera, who runs a restaurant across the street. "You know, everybody was you know, going crazy."

Olivera came outside when he heard the crash of bricks on the ground, and then saw a gaping hole in the wall up above.

"The car was up there, and all I see was the hole, and the bricks were on the floor," Olivera said.

Olivera said a parking attendant at the garage on the top floor of the building hit the gas and then hit the wall, breaking loose a section of bricks.

And it turned out, it was not the first time the building was damaged in a freak accident. Back in February of 2014, a snow plow pushed a garbage can -- crashing into the front glass window and injuring a woman sitting inside.

As for the latest incident, people in the area were just happy it didn't end up a lot worse.

"Oh man – lucky, very lucky," said Mike Barnwell. He said he walks down Austin Street all the time, "but now I'm going to start to run it."

"I'm horrified," added Sonya Gimondo. "I'm truly horrified."

Three cars were damaged, but people were wondering why the mess had not been cleaned up -- considering the accident happened Sunday.

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