WATERVILLE — A sport utility vehicle crashed into Aubuchon Hardware on Kennedy Memorial Drive Friday morning when the driver’s foot apparently slipped off the brake pedal onto the gas, breaking through the exterior wall and destroying a large light bulb display.

The woman driver was not hurt when the 2017 Nissan Rogue with temporary plates catapulted over a rim of concrete pavers and bags of lawn soil outside the store, crossed a swathe of landscaping stones and crashed through the metal sheathing of the building right under the Aubuchon Hardware sign.

“She was pulling into a parking spot and her foot slipped off the brake and hit the gas pedal,” Waterville police Sgt. Dave Caron said at the scene.

Caron would not release the name of the driver because she was not charged, but he said she is 71 and lives in Oakland. He estimated the damage to the building is in the thousands of dollars. The Nissan’s front end was heavily damaged in the crash, reported at 10:03 a.m., he said.

The driver of a new Nissan SUV peers into the Aubuchon Hardware building that she drove into in Waterville on Friday. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

“No charge,” Caron said when asked if the driver would face charges. “It was an accident.”

Just after the crash, store manager Caroline Smith was inside, surveying the damage. Packages of light bulbs and other merchandise were strewn over the floor where the display was broken from the vehicle’s having crashed through the wall. It entered the building just to the right of the main entrance.

“It’s a little extra excitement for the day I’m afraid,” Smith said. “I was out back and I heard the crash. It sounded like a bunch of metal and glass breaking. We are very fortunate. We had a young gentleman working in that area and he got a call to move some mulch. He had a guardian angel looking out for him, honestly.”

A company carpenter was on the way to assess the damage, Smith said, as Arbo’s Towing & Repair Service pulled into the parking lot to load the Nissan on its flatbed. The front of the vehicle was smashed in and the bumper was broken off. Smith said some of the merchandise on the light bulb display appeared not to be damaged.

As Waterville police Officer Luis Rodriguez spoke with the driver outside the building, Caron and Waterville fire Capt. Rodney Alderman said there was no structural damage to the building.

“It missed the structural members by a couple of inches,” Alderman said. “It’s just mostly cosmetic damage. Had she hit that structural member — the steel member —  I don’t think that she was going at a speed to cause structural damage, but she would have been hurt.”

The driver declined to comment on the crash.

Aubuchon is located at 485 Kennedy Memorial Drive, near the Oakland town line.

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