Crash knocks out Saluda water, damages Purple OnionPublished 3:01pm Monday, October 7, 2013
A truck caused a ruckus Friday, Oct. 4 around 5 p.m. in downtown Saluda after it drove through a fire hydrant launching a wrought-iron bench into Purple Onion’s front window.
Richard Baker’s gallery is a block around the corner from the Purple Onion.
“We heard the big crash and then Eva from the pottery shop downstairs came and got me. I went running out there to see if anyone was hurt and luckily no one was,” Baker said.
Saluda Police Chief James Cantrell said an 84-year-old man was attempting to leave a parking space in his red 4×4 Dodge truck when he placed it in drive instead of reverse.
Cantrell said officer John Rickman responded to the 911 call. Cantrell confirmed that no one was injured in the accident, but Saluda police did issue the man a citation for careless and reckless driving.
Rickman estimates The Purple Onion sustained at least $3,000 in damage. The wreck shattered the restaurant’s window and destroyed a grape vine arbor to the side of the building.
The restaurant closed Friday night, as did most other businesses throughout Saluda who remained without water until midnight that night.
Saluda City Clerk Monica Pace said the hydrant was connected to the city’s main line causing much of the city to be without water Friday evening. Pace said Green River BBQ was packed Friday night as most other restaurants were forced to close.
“Kudos to Purple Onion because they were open the next day,” Baker said.