Driver charged after SUV smashes into building in Campbell River

Driver ‘hit the gas instead of the brake,’ causing damage but no injuries

A vehicle smashed into the storefront of Willow Point Realty on Thursday morning. Photo by Todd Hahn

A vehicle smashed into a Campbell River office on Thursday, damaging the building but causing no injuries, and police say the driver is now facing a charge of “driving without care.”

Cpl. Ron Vlooswyk, a spokesperson for the Campbell River RCMP, said in an email that the driver wasn’t impaired and that the collision was “not intentional.”

“Charges under the Motor Vehicle Act were laid for driving without care,” Vlooswyk said.

Jennifer Kobayashi, owner of Willow Point Realty, thought her co-worker was making a racket when she heard the collision.

“It was just a tremendous crash – like shattering glass,” she said. “I was working in my office space and thinking, ‘What the heck is she doing up there.’”

When she saw what had happened, Kobayashi called 911 while a colleague helped the driver, she said.

“We got the vehicle turned off and put in park, and brought the driver into our office,” she said.

READ MORE: Driver airlifted to hospital following crash south of Campbell River

The driver was apparently pulling into a parking space when she hit the gas instead of the brake, Kobayashi said.

Firefighters from the No. 2 Fire Hall attended the scene, and the driver was already out of the vehicle when firefighters arrived, said Thomas Doherty, chief of the Campbell River Fire Department.

“They assessed the scene for fuel leaks and the building’s structural components along with assessing the patient until BC Ambulance arrived,” Doherty said.

He couldn’t confirm the cause of the incident but said that cases like these are more common than people think.

“A lot of the time it’s operator error, but in some circumstances it could be mechanical issues as well,” he said.

Shannon Miller, a spokesperson for the BC Emergency Health Service (BCEHS), said that an ambulance arrived at Willow Point Realty two minutes after BCEHS received an emergency call at 11:45 a.m.

“A patient was treated but not transported,” Miller said.

Campbell River resident Todd Hahn snapped a picture of the vehicle with its hood planted in the wall as he was heading to the gym on Thursday morning.

READ MORE: Police vehicle door torn off during stolen pickup takedown on the Island

In a Facebook message to the Mirror, Hahn said he didn’t witness the accident but watched from the treadmill at the gym as the car was towed.

The wall was soon boarded up with plywood and a restoration company was cleaning up, Kobayashi said. She expressed relief that nobody was injured or killed in the incident.

“Walls and cars and windows can be replaced,” said Kobayashi. “People certainly can’t be.”

@davidgordonkoch
david.koch@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Correction: An earlier version of this article stated that Doug Hahn took the photo of the SUV that smashed into the realtor’s wall. In fact, the photograph was taken by Todd Hahn. The Mirror apologizes for the error.

Just Posted

An Atlantic salmon is seen during a Department of Fisheries and Oceans fish health audit at the Okisollo fish farm near Campbell River, B.C. in 2018. The First Nations Leadership Council says an attempt by industry to overturn the phasing out of salmon farms in the Discovery Islands in contrary to their inherent Title and Rights. (THE CANADIAN PRESS /Jonathan Hayward photo)
First Nations Leadership Council denounces attempt to overturn salmon farm ban

B.C.’s producers filed for a judicial review of the Discovery Islands decision Jan. 18

A fire broke out near the Willow Point Bottle Depot early on Jan. 22. Photo courtesy Ashley Laycock
Two injured in early-morning fire in Campbell River

Sailboat fire also attended by Campbell River fire crews

A Vancouver Island teacher has started a petition imploring B.C. Premier John Horgan to close provincial borders to non-essential travel and enforce stricter quarantine measures for travellers. (B.C. government)
Teacher launches petition for B.C. to close provincial border, impose stricter quarantine

Province says what works elsewhere may not work here as they look into legalities of such actions

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the legislature, Jan. 11, 2021. (B.C. government)
Vancouver Island smashes COVID-19 high: 47 new cases in a day

Blowing past previous records, Vancouver Island is not matching B.C.s downward trend

Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021 is International Lego Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Jan. 24 to 30

Lego Day, Talk Like a Grizzled Prospector Day and Puzzle Day are all coming up this week

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

FILE - In this Feb. 14, 2017, file photo, Oklahoma State Rep. Justin Humphrey prepares to speak at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City. A mythical, ape-like creature that has captured the imagination of adventurers for decades has now become the target of Rep. Justin Humphrey. Humphrey, a Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season, He says issuing a state hunting license and tag could help boost tourism. (Steve Gooch/The Oklahoman via AP, File)
Oklahoma lawmaker proposes ‘Bigfoot’ hunting season

A Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season

Economic Development and Official Languages Minister Melanie Joly responds to a question in the House of Commons Monday November 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Federal minister touts need for new B.C. economic development agency

Last December’s federal economic update promised a stimulus package of about $100 billion this year

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2017, file photo, Larry King attends the 45th International Emmy Awards at the New York Hilton, in New York. Former CNN talk show host King has been hospitalized with COVID-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. CNN reported the 87-year-old King contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File)
Larry King, broadcasting giant for half-century, dies at 87

King conducted an estimated 50,000 on-air interviews

Comox Valley RCMP are looking for witnesses after the theft of a generator worth thousands of dollars. Photo supplied
RCMP asking Vancouver Island residents to watch for stolen generator

Vehicle may have been travelling on Highway 19

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death in North Saanich likely B.C.’s first in for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

Kimberly Proctor, 18, was murdered in 2010. Her family has spent many of the years since pushing for a law in her honour, that they say would help to prevent similar tragedies. (Courtesy of Jo-Anne Landolt)
Proposed law honouring murdered B.C. teen at a standstill, lacks government support

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions has concerns with involuntary detainment portion of act

Most Read