MIAMI, Fla. (WSVN) - A Miami man, who was behind the wheel of a van that plunged off a parking garage at the Miami International Airport, is speaking for the first time.
WSVN spoke to 59-year-old Orlando Luna, who has been an American Airlines employee for 35 years. On Friday morning, Luna said he entered his work van, buckled up and pressed the gas. He told WSVN that the van accelerated to a point that he lost control.
“I felt like the vehicle was fighting with itself, like fighting against me,” he explained.
The van traveled 16 feet before crashing through the fourth-story wall, and falling onto the concrete ground below.
Doctors say he suffered from a black eye, broken ribs, spine fractures and a collapsed lung, but without a seatbelt, he may not have survived the plunge.
“Imagine if he would have hit the ceiling of the car with his head unrestrained. I don’t think we would be here having this conversation,” said Dr. Nicholas Namias, chief at the Ryder Trauma Center.
Luna, who is a father and grandfather, said he felt lucky to be alive.
“God has given me a new opportunity, another perspective in life,” he said, “looking at everything in a different view, that everything material really doesn’t matter.”