Virginia 5th District Congressman Tom Perriello, a Democrat, spoke to the media yesterday regarding the car wreck Friday night, that was first reported yesterday, in which he was charged with an improper lane change, calling it, "one of those things that can happen anywhere." The Congressman, driving a pickup, sideswiped a Ford Explorer carrying four people, it into a grassy median. A 23-year-old "banged her knee a little bit, and they insisted on taking her in" to the hospital he said. The accident occurred near Burkeville on U.S. 460 where it splits with U.S. 360. He made the remarks to the Lynchburg News & Advance editorial board and tried to downplay the incident, although he acknowledged the difficulty in that considering his position and, especially, in the stretch run of a hotly contested election.
He said he signaled, visually checked and was not distracted in any way, and no alcohol was involved according to police. He blamed the accident on a blind spot.
"It didn’t feel like that big of a deal at the time. I guess, given who I am, it should always be" treated as a news-making event, but "we exchanged insurance as you do when you hit someone else’s car."