Acting manager Dee Walkus sweeps broken glass from the sidewalk in front of Cove Apparel Company Friday after the front door was shattered by a rock thrown by a string weed trimmer.

No break-in, just broken

Trimmer accident leads to broken window and RCMP call-out.

PORT HARDY—RCMP responding to an alarm at a local business Friday morning arrived to find the glass shattered from the establishment’s front door. But the culprit was neither a thief nor a vandal.

It was a small pebble.

“It’s a casualty of war,” public works employee Rob Walsh said as he helped sweep the small pebbles of glass from the sidewalk in front of The Cove apparel shop on Market Street.

Walsh and a co-worker were cleaning up the shrub planters lining the sidewalk between Market Street and the business about 8 a.m. Friday when the other employee’s weed trimmer flung a rock from the planter he was working in. It struck high up on the glass front door of the Cove, making a small hole but immediately spiderwebbing the safety glass and setting off the business’s alarm.

Walsh said the glass did not immediately fall from the door, but he and his co-worker remained there and blocked the sidewalk in front of the business.

“The first concern we had was that it would come down as some kid would come walking by, or a woman with a stroller,” he said.

As they waited, Walsh said they heard a crackle and the small bits of glass began tumbling from the door frame, top to bottom, both inside and outside the store.

The RCMP arrived because of the alarm call moments later, followed by acting Cove manager Dee Walkus.

Walkus, a cup of coffee in hand, said she was woken earlier than she normally would have planned for the store’s normal 10 a.m. opening. But as she grabbed a broom to join Walsh in  the cleanup effort, she said it could have been worse.

“I’m just glad it wasn’t one of these big windows,” Walkus said with a nod toward the large display window a few feet further along the storefront. “And they stayed until I came, and that was nice.”

The District of Port Hardy covered the replacement door glass. Walsh said crews try to avoid accidents of this and new summer workers each season are specifically trained to watch out for rocks and other debris when they’re working around vehicles and structures.

He also admitted this was not the first such incident this summer, while adding the timing was particularly unfortunate.

“This was our last sweep (of Market Street) for the season,” he said. “Because all our summer students are heading home.”