NEW HYDE PARK --Police on Long Island have charged a female driver who survived crashing into a Nassau County firehouse under the most unusual of circumstances.
The incident happened around 7 p.m. Monday on Jericho Turnpike in New Hyde Park.
The driver, identified as 22-year-old Sarah Espinosa, of Albany, apparently lost control of her Toyota Prius, crossed the median, struck a Nissan Maxima and careened into the fire station.
And the reason, according to police, was that a stolen snake in her car had wrapped itself around her neck.
The vehicle plowed through the main door, striking two fire trucks inside.
Fire personnel who were present at the time of the accident rendered aid to the victim, at which time they discovered a small ball python snake wrapped around her neck.
They removed the snake and secured it at the scene.
Officers responded and determined Espinosa had stolen the snake from a nearby PETCO just prior to the accident.
During the investigation, Espinosa was found to be in possession of marijuana.
She was treated and released from a local hospital, and no other injuries were reported. The snake was returned to the store.
Espinosa is charged with reckless endangerment, petit larceny, reckless driving, driving while intoxicated and unlawful possession of marijuana.
The snake costs about $90, but it cost the New Hyde Park fire department much more: they've temporarily lost one of their fire engines as a result of the accident.
"So you're down a fire truck now because someone wrapped a snake around her?", we asked New Hyde Park Fire Chief Steven Waldron.
"Correct. Thank God we're not a very busy department, but you never know. Anything could happen at any time," Waldron said.