Secret Service Called Harris Motorcade Accident 'Mechanical Failure'

The real cause was driver error
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 6, 2022 7:37 AM CDT
Secret Service Called Harris Motorcade Accident 'Mechanical Failure'
Vice President Kamala Harris speaks at the DNC Women's Leadership Forum, Friday, Sept. 30, 2022, at The Mayflower Hotel, in Washington.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Vice President Kamala Harris was unharmed when her motorcade was involved in a minor accident on a closed roadway in Washington, DC, on Monday morning—but insiders tell the Washington Post that the way it was reported to Secret Service leadership raised concerns. The agency's leaders were told "mechanical failure" had caused the crash when the driver of the SUV carrying Harris had actually hit the curb in a tunnel so hard a tire had to be replaced and Harris had to be whisked away in another vehicle. "During a protective movement Monday, a vehicle in a motorcade had a minor overcorrection and struck a curb," agency spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said Wednesday night, per NBC.

"The protectee was transferred to a secondary vehicle and the motorcade continued to its destination," he said. Guglielmi said initial radio traffic "indicated this was a mechanical failure" and that was communicated to leadership, but they were later updated with "pertinent details." Harris "sustained no injuries and appreciates the quick response by her USSS detail to get her to the White House safely," her press secretary said Wednesday. The Post's sources say the incident raised concerns about the driver's level of training and the Secret Service's history of covering up mistakes. The sources say Kim Cheatle, who became director of the Secret Service a month ago, told allies she was worried about the inaccuracy of the initial alerts. (Read more Secret Service stories.)

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