The Clifton Store will reopen Friday after a Dodge Caravan crashed into the building at around 8:00 p.m. on Wed. night, Sept. 4, 2013. No one was hurt in the crash, which has been deemed accidental.
"My understanding is that the driver was coming up Main St. and he thought a truck was going to hit him. He swerved and instead of putting his foot on the brake he mistakenly put it on the gas pedal," said store owner Tom McNamara.
Kristopher Burgher was bartending when the accident occurred.
"It was like a huge smash. The building shook and the lights flickered. We thought someone was doing something outside and we ran to the front and saw that a car ran into the building," said Burgher. "Things like this don't usually happen in Clifton. The most exciting thing that happens is when people get pulled over."
McNamara and his family have owned the store for 24 years and this incident is a first.
"It's a very strange sight to see the front of a van sticking out of my wine department. I always thought it would be neat to have a drive-thru window, but this isn't the way to do it," said McNamara.
McNamara praised the Fairfax County Collapse Team for constructing wooden supports at the impacted area. "Fairfax County was really great on this one. They really were," he said.