A young pregnant woman walked away mostly unscathed after a tornado lifted her car off the ground, flipped it in midair, and caused it to crash into another car traveling alongside her on the road. The 21-year old tells WCSC that she’s grateful to be alive after the accident, but goes on to say that her first thought was for her baby, whom she feared may have been hurt in the unusual crash.
Malaijha Smoke says she’d been let off work early due to weather advisories. Residents of Goose Creek, South Carolina were warned of inclement weather on roads, which traced back to Hurricane Idalia. At the same time, the area was on alert for possible tornadoes, meaning residents were at risk of not one but two different types of dangerous weather events.
And while driving home along US-52 in her ninth-generation Honda Accord, Smoke was caught in the middle of a “minor tornado/microburst,” as the expectant mother describes. Smoke is currently five months pregnant, and she says that her child’s safety stuck out in her mind throughout the incident. Her Honda Accord seems to have acquitted itself well, despite the horrific accident:
Local news outlet WCIV describes the incident as miraculous due to the little harm Smoke suffered. Things could have gone very wrong, very fast for the young woman and her unborn child, but, thankfully, they didn’t. After the car struck the ground and crashed, Smoke crawled out of the rear windshield, per WCIV:
“All of a sudden I just know I’m in the air. I close my eyes and and I just pray that I just make it out of this,” Smoke said.
Looking back, she can’t believe she walked away from it.
Although technically, she crawled away. Specifically, out the rear window of her vehicle – the only way out.
“I was just worried about another car maybe coming, hitting me. So I tried to get out as fast as I could,” she said.
Luckily, someone picked her off the ground and put her in a truck. She called her father right away, who came directly to the scene.
After she realized she was okay and able to walk, her first thought was for her unborn child.
The National Weather Service later confirmed the tornado that lifted Smoke’s Honda was an EF-0, or the weakest kind on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. The tornado traveled a total of 158 feet at 75 miles per hour, according to WCSC.
Smoke’s car was the only vehicle the brief tornado managed to move, although her Accord crashed into a silver sedan that was in the adjacent lane. The driver of the other car says it’s possible her car prevented Smoke’s from rolling further, which would’ve put Smoke and her baby at risk of greater harm. All people involved in the accident managed to come out with minor scrapes and bruises.