Vehicle crashes into Evanston McDonald's

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Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

A minivan crashed into a McDonald’s restaurant Thursday in north suburban Evanston.

The crash happened about 6:50 a.m. at the McDonald’s at Howard Street and Oakley Avenue, according to Evanston Fire Department Division Chief Paul Polep.

The 47-year-old Chicago woman driving the minivan was trying to turn from Oakley onto westbound Howard when she lost control, police said. The van went through the parking lot and hit the McDonald’s, coming to a rest in the dining area.

The driver and a 58-year-old Chicago man who was inside the McDonald’s were taken to Saint Francis Hospital in Evanston, according to Evanston police. The woman had suffered a leg injury while the man suffered minor lacerations.

Two McDonald’s employees were “shaken up” after the crash and were also taken to hospitals to be checked out, Polep said.

The minivan started to leak gas into the restaurant after the crash, police said. Fire officials responded to contain the gas leak and the McDonald’s remains closed Thursday afternoon for structural assessment, repairs and clean-up work.

The driver was cited for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, police said. She was also issued a ticket for a local ordinance violation for causing damage to a city tree.

Traffic on Howard Street was shut down between Ridge and Asbury Avenues, according to Evanston police. The street was reopened in both directions shortly after 9 a.m.

Another vehicle had crashed into the same McDonald’s on May 3, according to police and fire officials. A window could be seen boarded up with wood from the previous incident.