This is the text of the story............
RV goes wild after braking system fails
By Kim Morava
An Arkansas couple escaped serious injury Wednesday evening when their RV lost its brakes while exiting westbound Interstate 40 at Kickapoo, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle on Shawnee Mall Drive.
The accident occurred about 8 p.m. as Kathleen Barentsen, 63, of Salem, Ark., drove a 1996 Seabreeze RV, said Shawnee Police Cpl. Bricen Mohr.
Barentsen reported she lost the brakes as she exited at Kickapoo Street for gasoline. The RV, pulling a 16-foot utility trailer and a 1996 Honda Accord, traveled from the off-ramp, then completed three full 360 degree turns, evident by the tire marks in that area, he said.
During those circles, the RV hit a fence, along with three street signs, Mohr said, before impacting a rail fence on the north side of Chili's. Upon impact, the RV hit a parked GMC van, then turned one-quarter turn onto its side.
This RV lost its brakes exiting westbound Interstate 40 at Kickapoo Wednesday night, resulting in a wild ride on Shawnee Mall Drive before crashing into a parked van in the parking lot at Chili's. The driver suffered a minor cut to her leg and the passenger was not injured. SGT. MASON WILSON/SHAWNEE POLICE DEPARTMENT
The impact sent Barentsen over into the passenger seat, where her husband, Terry, was sitting. Both had on seat belts.
Terry, 65, was not injured and Kathleen was treated at the scene by REACT medics for a minor cut on her leg, Mohr said.
The van, which was being driven by a group of teachers from Poteau, was unoccupied at the time of the crash.
Terry said he believes that van helped save them from certain injury, because it stopped the RV from turning completely on its side.
The collision also resulted in some type of water or sewer line, possibly even a sprinkler line, to be broken, sending water through the parking lot.
Shawnee water crews were called and Shawnee firefighters responded to assist the couple at the scene, along with countless patrons of the restaurant who offered to help them. Chili's employees brought out chairs and free coffee for the couple.
Kathleen said the impact sent her out the passenger window as she talked about what happened.
"I thought it would eventually stop," she said about driving the RV without brakes. "I'm glad no one was on the street."
While the incident happened quickly, "it felt like a long time," she said.
The couple was en route to Clovis, N.M., then Yuma, Ariz., and on to California to visit family. Because of the accident, they were planning to stay in Shawnee overnight and have someone come from Arkansas to pick them up.
Kathleen said she was thankful for the many nice people who assisted them.
A Shawnee Public School official offered a school van to the Poteau group until the school could send one for them.
"I thought it was very nice of them," one teacher said, adding that she was glad no one was hurt.
Cpl. Mohr said because of the RV's apparent mechanical failure, Kathleen should be commended for keeping control of the van and avoiding injuries in this accident.
Brown and Sons Wrecker worked to get the RV upright and clear the scene.
2006 TourMaster T-36 / Good Sams / FMCA 380624