Honda plows into county elections office in Coupeville
By JUSTIN BURNETT
Whidbey News Times Staff reporter
October 19, 2012 · 3:57 PM
The Island County Elections Office in Coupeville was damaged Tuesday afternoon when a car rolled into the office’s front doorway.
Coupeville Marshal Lance Davenport said the collision occurred just after 4 p.m. A 67-year-old woman had parked her 2011 Honda CRV in front of the building’s entrance and thought the vehicle was in park.
“She leaned over to unlock the passenger door, her foot came off the brake and car rolled forward and hit the glass door,” Davenport said.
The driver has been identified as Margaret Swart of Greenbank.
The metal framing around the door was damaged and the outer pane of safety glass on the door was shattered, but the vehicle did not break through into the office’s interior.
According to Island County Auditor Sheilah Crider, a worker was inside at the time of the incident and was close to the front door. Neither she, nor the driver, was hurt.
“No one was injured and that’s what’s really important,” Crider said.
Temporary repairs have been made and the building is both accessible to the public and can be secured after hours by staff. Permanent repairs will cost about $1,500 and are expected to be completed by the end of next week.
This is the third incident this year in which a driver has collided with a storefront on North Main Street in Coupeville. A SUV hit a medical clinic across the street from the hospital in April and another struck Linds Pharmacy in July.
Davenport said vehicles hitting buildings are extremely rare incidents and that he can only remember two over his nearly 20-year career in law enforcement.
“To have three in a row is pretty unusual,” he said.
Davenport believes they are all coincidental and lack any discernible pattern that might dictate action by the Coupeville Marshal’s Office.
Contact Whidbey News Times Staff reporter Justin Burnett at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-675-6611 ext. 5054.