IT MIGHT be impervious to bullets, bombs and missiles, but “The Beast” can’t get over a ramp.
The supposedly impenetrable presidential Cadillac was disabled by a humble ramp at the US Embassy in Ballsbridge, Dublin.
Thankfully, given it is officially American soil, the finger of blame can’t be pointed at us.
The inquisition no doubt will follow as red-faced embassy and Secret Service officials try to figure out how this slight detail had been overlooked — and who did the overlooking.
In the age of instant media, the embarrassment was quickly up on YouTube.
It was not clear if the president and Mrs Obama were in the car or if it was a decoy. The president’s cavalcade always contains two identical limousines.
The Cadillac has its own oxygen supply in case of chemical attack and is fitted with state-of-the-art communication technology.
The incident happened just before 2pm as the cavalcade left the US Embassy.
The entire exit of the cavalcade was captured on video camera directly opposite the entrance to the embassy on Merrion Road.
A large crowd had gathered across the road and had a perfect view of what was about to happen.
There were cheers for the Cadillac when it went up the ramp. The front part for eight-tonne vehicle tipped over the ramp, followed by a large bang.
There was a large “ooh”, and the car was stuck.
One wise-crack in the crowd uttered: “Do you want a push?”
Within seconds, a blacked-out mini-bus pulled in front of The Beast. Ten minutes later a Dublin Bus arrived and blocked the entire entrance from view.
It appears the undercarriage of the car, which has reinforced steel plates attached to the chassis to protect against bomb attacks, hit the ramp as it went over and the low undercarriage could not go any farther.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved