JANET TAPPIN COELHO IN RIO DE JANEIRO dailymail.co.uk This is the astonishing moment a grandmother cheats death when she is struck by an out-of-control taxi and flung ten yards along the pavement. Mirtes de Oliveira Podesta, 64, was preparing to cross the road when the taxi driver smashes into another car and spins into her path at the end of a 24-hour shift without any sleep. CCTV pictures show the elderly woman being wiped out by the speeding cab in Maringa, Parana, south Brazil. But she has astonished doctors by escaping with only fractures to her arms and legs. Recovering in her hospital bed after Tuesday's crash, the pensioner said: 'All I remember is that I was being very careful about crossing the street. 'I stopped at the zebra crossing and the lights changed for me to go across. I just can't figure out how this happened to me, but I am amazed that I am still alive.' The doctor who attended the elderly victim said the car hit the left side of her body. 'The impact was mainly distributed between the arms and legs and luckily did not damage her spine and head,' Dr Denilson Dalleffe explained. 'Nothing in my medical training can explain how she survived. The trauma to her body was huge. It is a miracle and she will make a full recovery in six months,' he added. The taxi driver, Elton Rafael Garcia, 22, who hit Podesta, admitted to police that he had been working for 24 hours without sleep. He started driving cabs two months ago. He said he didn’t remember how the accident happened but confessed he was in a ‘state of drowsiness’. 'I’d been working through the night and was in a state of drowsiness. I think I must have fallen asleep. The next thing I remember was waking up when the airbag blew up in my face,' said Garcia. The cabbie dislocated his knee and suffered minor injuries to his chest and arms in the accident. He later posted a photo on a social networking site laughing and boasting how he had got off lightly. 'I wrote off my car but this is all that happened to me!' he said showing his injured arm. He was immediately condemned by the pensioner’s family who filed a complaint to the police and said they now intend to sue him for the accident and for the emotional distress caused by the distasteful joke. 'It just demonstrates that this driver is not ready to be behind a wheel as he has behaved completely irresponsibly by putting the photo on the internet,' said detective Luiz Carlos Barroso.
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