Chief of Police David Sabagh says yesterday’s accident involving a van that hit a 13 year old skateboarder is a “real tragedy for everyone involved.” “Everyone is in shock and the victim’s family has been with him at UMDNJ hospital ’round the clock.” MVAU rushed the boy to the hospital yesterday afternoon. “He sustained multiple internal injuries and was admitted in critical condition. At least one tire of the van appears to have run over the boy’s torso,” says Sabagh. After undergoing surgery, his condition is improving, but medical staff are reluctant to divulge additional information.
UPDATE:Montclair PD has released the name of the driver of the van, Peter Farnese, of Montclair. Mr. Farnese, described as “distraught at the scene of the accident,” is cooperating fully with police investigators.
Investigators have received conflicting reports about the incident, and are piecing together information now from witnesses, family, and people involved. Here’s what we do know:


At 2:46 pm Montclair Police received a 911 call that a pedestrian was struck by a vehicle on Orange Road. Police, ambulance, and investigators from the prosecutor’s office arrived on the scene.
The youth was riding a waveboard, heading south on Orange Road from Bloomfield Avenue, with a friend. It appears that the youth attempted to cross the road in the middle of the block, near the auto body repair shop and Hillside field. He probably didn’t see the van coming. The boy was hit by the van while in a traffic lane. The boy was not wearing a helmet.
No statement has been released yet about the driver of the van, or by the victim’s family. Sabagh did confirm both the victim and the driver are Montclair residents on Orange Road. No motor vehicle violations have been issued at this point, and it does not look like speed was a factor in this accident, although Sabagh states “it’s too early to tell, too early to point fingers.” The van has been impounded and is being checked for safety compliance.
We expect to have more information later today.

36 replies on “Montclair Teen Hit By Van: Update”

  1. This boy will be in my thoughts and prayers and if his family should see this, I want them to know that.
    My sons both skateboard, and sadly I believe it was only a matter of time before something like this happened.
    These towns we live in are so obsessed with ball sports, but offer nothing for youths who have biking and skating as an interest.
    We build playgrounds for tots and basketball and tennis courts. But if you skate or ride a bike, nothing.
    When my college-age son was about 14 years old, Bloomfield employed him and a friend to assist in teaching the “skateboard clinic” at the summer rec program. At that time a movement began to construct a skate/bike park in Bloomfield, near the Foley Field/Memorial Field tennis courts. Barista has been kind enough to cover that initiative from time to time.
    My son and other teen boys attended town council meetings and BMYGC committee meetings and Rec Commissioner meetings to support the park initiative. It was a great way for them to learn about government; if you want something, don’t sit and whine about it – get involved. They did. The were willing to fundraise, my son once forwarded info he saw about a grant opportunity. Unfortunately the lesson they have learned about government is that it’s four or five years later, and there is no skate/bike park.
    Skateboarding is a legitimate sport that requires agility, balance, strength and creativity. Though not a team sport, I know how much the skaters all encourage each other and are happy for each other’s successes. They’re a great group of kids, these Bloomfield boys who skate, and I’m sure they will be very upset when they learn of this accident.
    Barista, please keep us posted on this boy’s condition.
    Thank you.

  2. I feel for the family and the boy and the person who hit him. I hope he has a full and speedy recovery.
    I know from driving in Montclair, I drive with white knuckles. Day in and day out people are too eager to pull out in front of a moving car, run red lights and stop signs. On the flip side, teenagers these days are too eager to ride their skateboards down the middle of the street, pop a curb right when cars are coming around a bend.
    I am NOT saying this is the case, but is this what it is going to take to see that is a serious issue? I was riding down fullerton ave and on the other side of traffic these kids popped the curb into the street and a lady in a minivan swerved into my line. IF ONLY I were 25 feet closer, she would of hit me. I don’t know what a waveboard is, but with the post above – skating is a sport, there are rules/safety issues involved, why not have a skate park?
    People always say there is no place for kids to skate or the liability is too high, well what about this case? This guy who hit him has this on his head for the rest of his life?
    Would the kids go if they build it? Is skating in the streets more of a thrill? I know back home there is a skatepark and they have competitions and they have a bike park. Obviously other places have such parks, why not look into a bit deeper.

  3. There were about a dozen police vehicles near Nishuane at about 5:30 last night. My thought at the time was that someone had gotten struck by a car – anyone know what that was all about?

  4. To Surpirsed: You asked, if they build it will the kids use it? The answer is, yes. My sons drive all over North Jersey to go to skateparks. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if they didn’t have to ride a highway but instead could drive down the block to their own town’s skate/bike park?!

  5. “He probably didn’t see the van coming”
    Is that fact or SPECULATION !
    Should have impounded the waveboard

  6. The town really wanted to put a skatepark near the parking lot at the Walnut St. train station buy NIMBY neighbors got all uppity about it. How has that effort come along?

  7. When I was a kid and skateboarding was making it’s huge comeback – mid 80’s. My parents wound up building a half pipe in our garage because there was no place for my brothers to skate. It was a huge hit and there were always kids over, and no one was ever hurt.
    Build the kids a skate park!

  8. The plan for Walnut St was to cut down all those huge oak trees by the train station to put up a skate park – a truely awful idea.
    It’s not just NIMBY’s – it’s just a bad location for that use.

  9. I remember skateboarding in East Orange in 1966. We used to rip down Summit Street and make a quick right turn on to No. Munn. There were times that our speed would carry us a little farther out into the traffic lane than we had intended. There were never any collisions with Southbound Munn Ave. traffic but a few close calls.
    We were skateboard pioneers back then and perhaps some of the first kids on the East Coast to try skateboarding. My friend Drake used to build our skateboards from plywood and rollerskate wheels.

  10. Also, Walter Iooss, who later became a famous sports photographer (Sports Illustrated , sports photography, Swimsuit Edition, etc.) , took ‘action’ photos of us as we careened down the street.
    I contacted him a little while ago to see if he still had any of those photos, but, alas, they are not readily available…

  11. Read the story: travelling south on Orange Rd. from Bloomfield Ave. It’s between Bloomfield and Hillside Rd.

  12. Nishuane PArk yesterday:
    Out of control teens rumbling attacked others with a baseball bat. Not basbeball players, others who were hanging out. The same who were causing commotion in the streets the day before. Teen also got beat up at the Rand basketball courts yesterday, taken away in an ambulance.

  13. By the way, the calls for a skatepark are great and all, and I think there should be one here somewhere, but biking and skating are primarily forms of transportation, and some of the few open to kids. If he was going from point A to point B and got hit by a van at point C, a skatepark wouldn’t have saved him.
    Get well soon, kid.

  14. “Also, Walter Iooss, who later became a famous sports photographer (Sports Illustrated , sports photography, Swimsuit Edition, etc.) , took ‘action’ photos of us as we careened down the street.
    I contacted him a little while ago to see if he still had any of those photos, but, alas, they are not readily available…
    Posted by: Hiding in Baristaville | March 30, 2007 1:01 PM ”
    Contact Time/Life – they may have your photos in their digital achive
    https://www.timelifepictures.com/ms_timepix/source/home/home.aspx?pg=1

  15. https://www.bloomfieldtwpnj.com/pdf/Bloomfield_Buzz_Winter_07.pdf
    From the Winter 2007 edition of Bloomfield Buzz (p4):
    “Ramp Park
    The long-awaited haven for skateboarders and BMX cyclists is expected to be ready by summer or fall at Lower Memorial Park on the site of the former miniature golf course. Renowned ramp park designer Nate Wessel is involved in the project in honor of his deceased friend Joe Tiseo, a Bloomfield resident and professional BMX cyclist. Funding comes from Green Acres, the Essex County Open Space Program and capital funds.”

  16. and thanks for posting that clip from Bloomfield Buzz, my Watsessing Neighbor, the fact of the matter is they make this announcement EVERY spring. The park is perpetually on the verge of being built. At this point, I’ll believe it when I see it.

  17. The scariest skateboarding I’ve seen was this week–while waiting at the light by the Volvo dealer (corner of Blfd. Ave.), I saw a young guy riding on a skateboard while wheeling a stroller. I am truly not making this stuff up. Can you imagine the lack of control he had? He was crossing Bloomfield Ave. to Valley Road. I looked twice to make sure I wasn’t imagining it, but no, this dad thought it was a good idea to take the baby out while he rode his board.

  18. To With All Due Respect:
    I hear ya….I’ve lived in Bloomfield for the past 9 years and I think there was some mention of that skate park when I first moved here! So, yes, you’re right, but I’m hopeful everytime I see a write up about it!
    Another scary skateboarding sighting:
    Right in front of Division East (at the light at Glen Ridge Pkwy and Bloomfield Ave) there always seems to be at least 2 or 3 skaters that wait for the light to turn red. Then they jump out onto the street, do a few ollies and other tricks and just as the light turns green (and cars slowly start moving), they stop and get back onto the sidewalk. And a LOT of times, they don’t land their tricks and the skateboard goes flying down the street. Then the cars have to stop and wait for them to retrieve their skateboards.
    I don’t know about that, but everytime I’m waiting at that light in front of Division East, I can just see one of those skaters falling on their ass and some unattentive driver running them over!

  19. A skate park would be cool but will not prevent kids from riding their boards to the park or anywhere else.

  20. I saw the skateboarding-stroller guy too! Amazing! I knew I wasn’t the only one who would notice such a sight. That is some exercise man, because I saw him on Chestnut and that’s quite a distance.

  21. I have just missed hitting skateboarders crossing fullerton in the middle of traffic, headphones on, not even acknowledging traffic. It’s a fine line between cool and dead. Can the cops confiscate their boards?

  22. It’s typical on this site that a topic becomes a myopic diatribe. The original posting concerning a 7th grader hit by a van became muddled by selfishness. If anyone cares, he’s not doing too well; still in critical condition.

  23. stupidupe, we’re talking about the fact that he was riding a skateboard and that it appears that that is what led to his accident
    The two are related.
    Kids in Mointclair would use a skateboard park.
    It’s been sugegsted that a dogpark be put in County owned Brookdale. Why not a skateboard park as well.
    There is an archery field in Brookdale. Exactly how many people use it?

  24. If anyone as any credible updates about the boy involved, please post them. Many people in town are concerned and praying for a good outcome and would appreciate any news. Thanks

  25. “Can the cops confiscate their boards?”
    Yeah let’s do that. And to be fair, confiscate the cars of those driving with headphones on, cell phoning, eating, reading the paper or farding. Too many of you drive like sh*t!

  26. No, the boy is not doing well. Orginally, his brain functions were normal and there was optimism for recovery despite severe internal injuries. But he has not come out of the trauma induced coma and has suffered a setback with swelling of the brain, which was treated with anti-inflamatory drugs. He is also having difficulty breathing. Right now, he needs our prayers.

  27. Ive heard of this kid before and i think that kids like me pay attention to these risks that cause injuries. I think it would be a real good idea to build a skatepark in a better area like montcliar Brookdale park or in bloomfield just so kids have a place to go skate instead of wondering the street with no helmets. KIds want to go to there limit see how much they can do. Try to cross streets right before cars come to see if who comes closer. I have a waveboard it is like a skateboard but only has 2 wheels and you have to wiggle to move the board. Waveboards seem to swerve if you do something wrong, try to take a sharp turn, or hit a bump you go flying off. I just hope that the hosptal does there hardest and prey to recorver this 7th, 13 year old from Glenfield school. I know friends of his. Good luck kid!

  28. Ive heard of this kid before and i think that kids like me should pay attention to these risks that cause injuries. I think it would be a real good idea to build a skatepark in a better area like montcliar Brookdale park or in bloomfield just so kids have a place to go skate instead of wondering the street with no helmets. KIds want to go to there limit see how much they can do. Try to cross streets right before cars come to see if who comes closer. I have a waveboard it is like a skateboard but only has 2 wheels and you have to wiggle to move the board. Waveboards seem to swerve if you do something wrong, try to take a sharp turn, or hit a bump you go flying off. I just hope that the hosptal does there hardest and prey to recorver this 7th, 13 year old from Glenfield school. I know friends of his. Good luck kid!

  29. Ive heard of this kid before and i think that kids like me should pay attention to these risks that cause injuries. I think it would be a real good idea to build a skatepark in a better area like montcliar Brookdale park or in bloomfield just so kids have a place to go skate instead of wondering the street with no helmets. KIds want to go to there limit see how much they can do. Try to cross streets right before cars come to see if who comes closer. I have a waveboard it is like a skateboard but only has 2 wheels and you have to wiggle to move the board. Waveboards seem to swerve if you do something wrong, try to take a sharp turn, or hit a bump you go flying off. I just hope that the hosptal does there hardest and prey to recorver this 7th, 13 year old from Glenfield school. I know friends of his. Good luck kid!

  30. Just this morning, Sunday, coming home from breakfast around 10, encountered a young teen on a wave board, no helmet, weaving up and down No. Fullerton. Where the hell are the parents of these kids? A local kid is apparently in a fight for his life and you let your kid out the door with no helmet to skate down the middle of the street. Unreal. But instead of blaming anyone that can control the situation, let’s attack the local politicians for not building a park. Give me a break.

  31. Please show us the attacks on local politicians concerning the lack of a skateboard park.
    I think that all of these “attacks” are located in your head!
    Should we have the parents arrested for having their child violate the NJ Helmet Law?
    Title 39:4-10.1
    In New Jersey, anyone under 17 years of age that rides a bicycle or is a passenger on a bicycle, or is towed as a passenger by a bicycle must wear a safety helmet.
    On August 1, 1998 this helmet law was extended to include roller and inline skates and skateboards. Roller skates means a pair of devices worn on the feet with a set of wheels attached, regardless of the number or placement of those wheels and used to glide or propel the user over the ground.

  32. Today while walking down Bloomfield Avenue, I noticed “Our Daily Accident” with an ambulance, at least four police cars and a group of three or four policemen laughing and chatting away.
    Another day, another disaster.

  33. I do not want to reveal the identity of the family unless I have their permission. However, you may want to know that the mom of this child is a greatly beloved teacher in the Montclair Public Schools. Please pray for him and his family. I am personally deeply affected by this as my son was close to this vivacious young man when they were younger.

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