Alstonville Cellars licensee Robyn Evans at the counter damaged when a car smashed through the front window seconds after she l
Alstonville Cellars licensee Robyn Evans at the counter damaged when a car smashed through the front window seconds after she l

Runaway car causes close call

PATRIZIA REIMER

ROBYN EVANS avoided serious injury by 30 seconds yesterday.

The Alstonville Cellars licensee had just walked into the cool room when a car smashed into her shopfront about 11am right where she had just been standing.

If she hadn't moved half a minute earlier, Robyn would have been crushed by plate glass, steel bars and a shop counter.

It's the third time it's happened in two years. The last time was in May this year; a year earlier it was a night-time ram-raid.

"I've had better days, but I'm all right," said the resilient businesswoman.

"The cool room door was still open when I heard an enormous crash and bang."

A mere half an hour after the incident Robyn was serving a steady stream of customers, dodging tumbled cigarettes and sifting through alcohol-soaked stock to find a packet of gum for a regular. She gave away the gum as damaged goods.

"It's a bit early for a Bundy isn't it?" she joked. "We want bollards here, I've asked the owners and they've ignored us.

"Now I'm going to get a petition. Enough is enough." Robyn should have some success with the petition. After all, this type of incident seems to be a common occurrence at the Alstonville Plaza.

Two shops down, the Alstonville Florist had virtually an identical incident a few years ago. A driver depressed the accelerator instead of the brake, mounting the kerb and destroying the window, along with thousands of dollars worth of stock.

Wal Murray & Co First National Real Estate's front window was also shattered by an errant car about a year and a half ago.

Robyn estimates it will cost more than $3000 to replace the window, personally costing her $800 in insurance excess charges. She lost about $800 worth of cigars and is not sure how much it will cost to replace the shop counter. Fortunately, most of the stock which fell from the shelves seemed to have remained intact.

Yesterday the 65-year-old female driver from Goonellabah was taken to Lismore Base Hospital by ambulance.

She had neck pain and was in some distress, but suffered only minor injuries.

Police believe she may have hit the accelerator instead of the brake, but had not yet taken a full statement.



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