A handmade log planter from Aaron Vissia Financial lies smashed on the sidewalk after a car lost its brakes and plowed up the sidewalk.

Near miss on Johnston Road sidewalk for runaway vehicle

A car narrowly missed smashing into several businesses on lower Johnston Road on Friday after losing its brakes.

A car narrowly missed smashing into several businesses on lower Johnston Road on Friday after losing its brakes.

“It was pretty scary,” said Aaron Vissia, owner of Aaron Vissia Financial, whose handcrafted log sign was smashed.

“We’re lucky nobody died. I think our sign slowed that vehicle down.”

Port Alberni RCMP responded to an accident at 5:19 p.m. on Friday, April 29 in the 4800-block of Johnston Road. “Witnesses had observed an older green car drive up on to the sidewalk,” RCMP Cpl. Amelia Hayden related.

“The vehicle was being driven, by its owner, westbound on Johnston Road toward Gertrude Street and lost pressure in his brakes. The resulting brake failure caused the driver to take decisive action,” Hayden said.

With vehicle traffic in front of him and seeing that there weren’t any vehicles or pedestrians on the right side of the roadway or on the sidewalk, the driver manoeuvred his car up onto the outer edge of sidewalk. The car collided with a city parking sign, hit Vissia Financial’s sidewalk sign then a table in front of Totally Board Surf Company before careening around the corner and stopping just short of Beaver Creek Home Center.

“He made it between the service pole and the light pole” at the corner of Johnston Road and Gertrude Street, Vissia said. “It’s not much wider than a car there.”

The vehicle had minor damage and no one was injured, according to RCMP.  The driver was not intoxicated and will pay damages to the businesses, Hayden added.

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