Minimal damage when driver collides with bank

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Crews from the Airdrie Fire Department (AFD) were called out Dec. 7 at approximately 10:40 a.m. to the ATB Financial on Main Street South. According to Deputy Fire Chief Garth Rabel, a small car jumped a curb and collided with the front window of the building.

“When crews arrived, AHS was already on scene,” he said. “Damage was minimal – it was assessed by Fire Prevention and the (City of Airdrie) building inspector but the damage wasn’t to a weight-bearing wall at all; it was largely cosmetic.”

EMS Spokesman Stuart Brideaux said the female driver – who was the lone occupant of the vehicle – refused assessment by EMS.

“She didn’t have any injuries of note and was able to exit the vehicle before EMS arriving,” he said. “We didn’t assess or transport anyone from that scene. It was deemed to be non-injury.”

Rabel said the bank was only shut for a short period of time as investigators ensured there was no damage that would render it unstable. The area was cordoned off until crews could clean up debris and broken glass. The bank is open as repairs are underway.

“Once it was deemed to not be weight-bearing, it was determined there was damage to the façade and some to the interior,” he said.

The cause of the incident remains under investigation by the RCMP, according to Rabel.

The AFD is often called out to incidents that don’t include an actual fire, according to Rabel.

“It’s a potential public hazard…. We’re the first ones on scene that can really determine if there is going to be an issue in terms of if evacuation is required,” he said. “The AFD implements an all hazard approach in our work. We just have to make sure that everything from patient care to stabilization of the vehicle to assessing damage to the building (are done). Everything is within our scope to assess and mitigate along with those other agencies as need be.”

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