A Margate family has been left shaken after suspected joy riders smashed into their campervan twice at Walpole Bay while they were asleep inside.
Donna Walker, her husband and five-year-old daughter were staying in the tidal pool car park last night (September 3) to escape the noise of a nightclub that operates under their home.
But at around 2am this morning they could hear cars being raced around the car park and then one smashed into their van, spinning the vehicle around. Terrifyingly, the driver then went in for a second hit at high speed.
Donna, 41, is now warning other people who might think of staying there about the danger and urging anyone who can help with information to contact police.
She said: “My husband, 5-year-old daughter and I were sleeping down at the tidal pool car park tonight in our van to escape the noise from the club below our flat.
“At around 2am, joy riders were racing around the car park and their car hit us. Not just a small hit, this was a direct and targeted extremely fast hit. Our whole van shook and span around 45 degrees. They then went in for a second hit, reversing into us, I think, at high speed and smashing their own brake lights. They shattered their own windscreen in the impact, not sure if front or rear, and they left two enormous dents in the front of our van, which is likely now a write off.
“To be woken up like this was completely terrifying. The car hit us so close to where my daughter was sleeping inside the van. I am so thankful we are all ok.”
Donna says the family were in “total panic” and, although the culprits had gone, they felt so unsafe that they returned home.
She said: “One jolt could be accidental, the second jolt felt targeted. That was when we both panicked.”
Donna is appealing for anyone who sees a smashed up blue Honda or has CCTV footage of anyone joy riding nearby around that time, to get in touch with police quoting reference 05-0477 or the traffic reference below.
A Kent Police spokesperson said: “Kent Police was contacted on Sunday 4 September and it was reported that, at around 2am that morning, a car had collided with and a parked camper van in the car park next to Walpole Bay Tidal Pool, Cliftonville.
“It is reported that the car did not stop at the scene and enquiries into the incident are being carried out by Kent Police’s Traffic Summons Team.
“Anyone with information should call 01843 22289, quoting reference 209-2150-22-4646-WE02.”