Crash doesn't stop meat draw

It was business as usual at the Army Navy & Airforce Veterans in Canada building in Penticton on Monday.

But it could have been a much different story.

First vice president Lloyd Raincock said they were lucky no one was sitting in the games room area of the building, where a car smashed through the wall on Sunday.

"There were about 35 people in the building at the time, but fortunately everyone was sitting on the other side," he said. "I jumped out of my chair and people sitting at the nearest table took off and ran because glass was flying everywhere."

Raincock said the incident took place arund 11:45 a.m., as he and others were just finishing up their general meeting.

An elderly man had just picked up his wife, who uses a wheelchair, and was backing up.

When he saw he was getting close to the sidewalk, he inadvertently stepped on the gas instead of the brake and went straight through the wall.

They immediately called 911 and the fire department got there quickly, with the RCMP coming afterward.

The woman was taken back to her care home by ambulance and the man appeared to be fine, although a little shaken up.

Raincock said they feel badly for the driver and see it as an accident.

"We are all just happy no one got hurt," he said. "It sounded like an explosion. It was real loud."

The group still carried on with their meat draw Sunday afternoon, and were back in the building on Monday.

Although it was mainly structural damage to the wall, the impact buckled the ceiling tile as well.

Raincock said both their insurance company and ICBC had been contacted.

He thought the damage could be anywhere from $40,000 to $50,000.

To the best of his knowledge, this has never happened before and he hopes it never happens again.

Cpl. Martin Trudeau with the Penticton RCMP said they are not pursuing charges.




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