Utah man drives van off parking garage, survives with 'very minor injuries,' fire official says

A man in Utah survived with only "minor injuries" after he drove a van off the top of a parking garage near downtown Salt Lake City on Wednesday, according to officials.

The Salt Lake City Fire Department said the incident happened just before 1 p.m. in a parking garage in the area of 500 East between 1st South and South Temple Streets.

The driver -- for an unknown reason -- drove off the second story of a parking garage, the top level of the structure.

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Salt Lake City Police told FOX13 the burgundy Ford Econoline 150 was driven through a chain-link fence on the top level of the parking garage before plummetting about 25 feet to the ground below.

Fire officials were called to the scene after the van was driven off the parking deck just before 1 p.m. near downtown Salt Lake City.

Fire officials were called to the scene after the van was driven off the parking deck just before 1 p.m. near downtown Salt Lake City. (Salt Lake City Fire Department)

The vehicle then became pinned between the building and a separate parking structure next door.

Fire officials said they had to send in a heavy rescue crew to get the 50-year-old driver out due to the vehicle's position and "stability" concerns.

Heavy rescue crews were called in due to the vehicle's position and "stability" concerns.

Heavy rescue crews were called in due to the vehicle's position and "stability" concerns. (Salt Lake City Fire Department)

The man was able to be extricated within five minutes and only sustained minor injuries, according to fire officials. He was later taken to an area hospital.

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"When you fall from that distance inside a vehicle it’s very unusual to not sustain any major damage or any injuries," Salt Lake Fire Captain Adam Archuleta told FOX13. "So again, very fortunate up to this point to determine there are very minor injuries."

The vehicle fell about 25 feet after it was driven off the top of the parking deck.

The vehicle fell about 25 feet after it was driven off the top of the parking deck. (Salt Lake City Fire Department)

The man was later taken to an area hospital.

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Officials were able to retrieve the wreckage of the van just before 4 p.m. after using a large tow truck, according to FOX13.

Officials said they are still investigating what caused the driver to go over the ledge and off the deck. The 50-year-old man is undergoing a physical and mental evaluation, in addition to questioning by police, as part of the investigation.