Heather Randolph stopped in front of the Blac -N- Bleu Bistro and stared at the large hole and shattered glass left after witnesses said a driver jumped the curb and drove his white Toyota Corolla completely inside the restaurant on Wednesday afternoon.
“I’m coming to work,” she said, as a way of explanation to nearby onlookers.
Then she paused as she surveyed the damage, fellow employees, police officers and crowd in attendance.
“I guess I’m not working,” she said.
Police said the driver, Raymond Sees, drove his car through a section of the glass exterior in front of the bistro located at 1700 NW Garden Valley Blvd.
The crash, reported at 3:15 p.m., resulted in two people sustaining minor injuries as a result of flying glass, police said.
Kristin Koens owns the Blac -N- Bleu Bistro with her husband, Todd Koens.
Kristin Koens knows the injuries could have been worse.
“I’m happy it was slow time here because we would have a lot more people at those tables,” she said.
Roseburg police officer Patrick Moore said a preliminary investigation showed the driver’s recent foot surgery was a contributing factor in the crash.
“That caused him to be unable to negotiate from the gas to the brake and back appropriately in time,” Moore said. “He hopped the curb with his foot stuck on the gas.”
No citations were issued in connection with the crash, Moore said.
Paxus Calta was sitting with a friend next door on the patio of My Coffee when the crash happened.
“We heard this scraping noise of the car jumping the curb,” Calta said. “Then we saw the car drive up and through the glass.”
Randolph, who is a bartender for Blac -N- Bleu, learned of the crash from her daughter as she was getting ready for work.
When she arrived, the damage was more than she expected.
“I thought somebody hit a brick,” Randolph said. “I did not expect this.”
As of Thursday morning, an employee at the bistro said the glass panel was patched and the restaurant was open for business.
This is the latest in a series of similar car crashes into buildings since March 2018.
Among the most notable:
In June of this year, a car smashed into the building housing the former Roseburg Beauty College, sending the driver to the hospital.
In March, a Roseburg broker escaped injury after a Ford-250 pickup crashed into Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Real Estate Professionals on Northwest Mulholland Drive in Roseburg. Police said the driver lost consciousness shortly before the crash.
In December 2018, a car crashed into Pete’s Drive-in and caught fire, causing extensive damage and forcing the popular eatery to shut down for several months. Owners Darrell and Andrea Orth rebuilt the drive-in and reopened in time for Grafitti Days in July.
In July 2018, an elderly woman crashed into the outpatient lab for CHI Mercy Medical Center in Roseburg, forcing it to be shut down for a few months so the building could be repaired.