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None Harmed as Drunk Driver Flips Car at Pour House Wednesday

Things could have gone a lot worse for Patrick Smith, 29, of Cherry Hill, who allegedly drove erratically into town down Cuthbert Boulevard.

A drunken driver reportedly wove across Cuthbert Boulevard all the way from Cherry Hill into Haddon Township, and then flipped his vehicle in front of a busy Haddon Avenue pub Wednesday night.

Patrick Smith, 29, of Cherry Hill, struck a black Ford Explorer on Haddon Avenue in front of the at 9:07 p.m., slamming it into another parked car and flipping his own 2009 Mazda sedan in the process, said Haddon Township Police.

Both vehicles were unoccupied, according to police. Although Smith was transported to Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center in Camden, he sustained only minor injuries.

There were no skid marks and thus no speed estimates available from the scene, said Haddon Township Police Capt. George Tagmire. Smith’s blood-alcohol level was collected from blood tests at the hospital, and was not immediately available.

The restaurant emptied almost instantly, said Remo Croce, 29, general manager of the Pour House. He estimated that “90 percent” of patrons at the restaurant didn’t see the accident occur.

Croce said he was working in the kitchen when two servers came into the back screaming. He said he ran outside, and “the first thing I saw was the guy crawling out of there.”

Croce, who said he used to play high school sports against Smith, added that a couple of the restaurant patrons thought they’d recognized Smith’s car.

At the time of the accident, Haddon Township police had been en route to the scene in response to a 911 report of reckless driving, Tagmire said. The call originated from another driver who followed Smith into town as he reportedly swerved down Cuthbert Boulevard.

Smith was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated, careless driving, failure to wear a seat belt and failure to signal while changing lanes.

Meghan July 13, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Thankfully no one was hurt & at least the fire house & the police station are right there!
DoneWithNews July 13, 2012 at 01:05 PM
"We build Mazdas. What do you flip?
Mike Laylor July 13, 2012 at 09:04 PM
Sober Sam could of helped if only he asked for it.

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