WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (WGHP) — Mr. Barbecue is open for business, albeit only through the drive-thru, after a car smashed through the front of the Winston-Salem restaurant on Tuesday morning.
While the restaurant does not know when the dining room will be able to reopen, staff told FOX8 on Wednesday that the restaurant is able to serve customers through the drive-thru, and customers are welcome to sit on the patio.
At 9:32 a.m. Tuesday, the Winston-Salem Fire Department said a motor vehicle hit the restaurant on Peters Creek Parkway at Link Road.
According to the Winston-Salem Police Department, the preliminary investigation suggests the driver was speeding and swerved to avoid hitting a car that pulled out in front of him. Four to five employees were working at that time, and nobody was injured.
Andrew Carros, a prep cook with Mr. Barbecue, said he had just stepped outside to get something from his car when he saw the situation unfold. He said he saw the car speeding down Peters Creek Parkway, jump across the median and fly into the restaurant parking lot and into the building’s front entrance.
“I was like yelling, ‘Stop! Stop!’ but it just kept going. Then, boom, right into the front. As soon as the car hit the front of the building, I just pulled out my phone, called 911,” Carros said.
He said there were three people in the car that hit the building.
“When it first kind of went into the building, it kind of blew my mind a little bit … Thankfully, no one’s hurt,” Andrew said.
WSFD released video of the scene showing a vehicle stopped inside the restaurant after having apparently crashed through the front of the building. A path of dirt and tire marks leads up to the impact site.
Crews started cleaning up the debris left behind just one hour after the crash and have been working to board up the entrance.
This isn’t the first time the restaurant has dealt with a setback like this,. It was recently remodeled in 2020 after a fire destroyed the building in 2019.
Owner James Caross, whose family has helmed the restaurant since it was founded in 1962, said they are no stranger to recovering from incidents like this.
In a Facebook post, the restaurant said this is the second time someone’s run their car into the building.