Albany fire department uses jaws of life to extricate the driver of a Honda Civic badly damaged in the accident. Photo: Jane Tierney.

A seemingly out-of-control BMW careened careered down Solano Avenue Sunday morning, sending at least two people to hospital and damaging seven other cars. Shahram Farshchi, the driver of the car, told Albany Patch, “I believe I had a seizure, or something like a seizure, because I don’t remember anything.”

Farshchi, a 56-year old biochemist who lives in Berkeley, was arrested by the Berkeley police and released with a misdemeanor citation.

Farshchi was driving west on Solano when he first hit a Honda with a woman and child inside near Colusa. There were no injuries in that collision. He continued down Solano into Albany, finally coming to a halt near the intersection with Peralta Avenue. The Berkeley police made the arrest for the first hit-and-run collision.

Eyewitnesses told Berkeleyside and Albany Patch that the car accelerated down Solano, passing cars on the wrong side of the double yellow line. Read Albany Patch’s extensive coverage of the accident.

Lance Knobel

Lance Knobel (co-founder) has been a journalist for nearly 40 years. Much of his career was in business journalism. He was editor-in-chief of both Management Today, the leading business magazine in Britain,...

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  1. Thank God he didn’t kill anybody! Terrible… Regarding seizures, if you have 3 they automatically take your license away. If driving during one, they should take it away immediately (or withdraw it until further notice).
    But it doesn’t seem like a man who had a seizure. But, I wasn’t there so I don’t know. But I have had 2 grand-mal seizures in my life. Past 10 years.

  2. @ JF ––– I agree. Seems like these days all you have to do is say “I had a seizure.” and you can get away with any kind of reckless driving infractions you want. Unless they have some kind of real evidence showing that this was some sort of medical event, they ought to assume this guy was just being a jackass and revoke his license. Hell, even if it’s a medical condition, he clearly shouldn’t be driving at all if this kind of thing can happen.

  3. I heard the driver of the BMW tell the officers at the scene that: “someone ran a stop sign, and I swerved.” Obviously, he thought twice about that story and changed his tune later. Other witnesses described him as going 50 MPH and swerving on both sides of the street, all the way down from Ensenada Ave., (near By Hand) before he hit the additional cars in front of Barney’s near Tacoma Ave. He was going so fast that pedestrians looked up at the sound of his car whizzing by. If you look at that Honda in the picture, you know he had to be going pretty fast. The whole rear of the car was compressed into the back seat. It’s a miracle the woman was left alive. Her spare tire from the trunk was in middle console between the two front seats! It’s a testament to modern automobile safety standards that the driver and front passenger compartments were wholly intact and relatively untouched. I’m just thankful she had no children in the back seat.