Ilford taxi driver ‘lucky to be alive’ after pram pushed in front of cab

A taxi driver from Ilford says he is “lucky to be alive” after pranksters pushed a pram in front of his cab.

Wajid Ali, 59, swerved to avoid the pram, thought to be rolled into his path on purpose, lost control and smashed into another car and a house in Wanstead Park Road, Ilford.

Although he wasn’t seriously injured, Mr Ali’s black cab was written off in the crash and another 4x4 was badly damaged.

Mr Ali, who lives on the same street, said: “I thought I was going to kill a small child, it is awful.

“I had a split second to react to the pram in front of me, and the next thing I know I hit the wall.”

He added: “Someone must have been saying a prayer for me, because I was OK.”

He said he was travelling at about 25mph when the pram rolled into his path at 3.30pm on Monday of last week.

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Bystanders helped to free the driver from the wreckage and he spent 30 minutes being treated in an ambulance for minor injuries and shock. Another witness said he saw someone running from the scene.

Mr Ali said: “After gaining some composure I went to the pushchair to see if there was a hurt child in it, and all that was inside was scrap metal.”

Last month a woman was left with fractures to her face and ribs, and serious internal injuries, after mindless thugs dropped concrete on to a car she was travelling in on the A12 in Essex.

Mr Ali compared what happened to him to that incident.

He said: “I have been driving a taxi for 18 years and I have never seen anything like this.

“It is like what happened on the A12, these people are playing with other peoples lives to have ‘fun’. I just thank God that I am still alive and no one else was hurt.”

Mr Ali, who was fully insured, plans to take a number of weeks off work to recover from the ordeal.