Shoring operations begin on stores affected in truck accident
Published 12:25 pm Monday, February 27, 2017
Several businesses were closed on Monday after a truck crashed into the side of jcg apparel on the Square.
Jimmy Allgood, the Director of Emergency Management, says that the incident happened between 5 and 5:30 a.m. on Monday morning. According to an Oxford Police Department report, the truck driver suffered a “medical episode” leading to the accident.
The stores that were closed alongside jcg late Monday morning were Rowdy Rebs, Ajax Diner and Oxford Grillehouse. Allgood says that once the lumber arrived to begin shoring operations, the restaurants and store would reopen.
“It’s going to take several hours to complete the shoring operation,” Allgood said. “They’re waiting on some lumber to get here, they’ve got the equipment all set up.”
Tim Phillips, part owner of Phillips Properties that owns the buildings occupied by Rooster’s and Oxford Grillehouse, was relieved no one was seriously injured in the accident.
“The buildings can be repaired,” Phillips said. “We are glad that the person who had the seizure will be okay.”
The driver, heading westbound on Jackson Avenue, went between two crape myrtles on the Square, knocking over an electric box.
It then struck a support to an overhang at Oxford Grillehouse and a parking meter before crashing into the corner of the restaurant and jcg apparel.
The truck then bounced off the building, knocking over a light pole and another parking meter before coming to rest against a support for the balcony at Wilson Law Firm above Ajax Diner. The restaurant posted on social media Monday they “hope to be open for lunch Tuesday.”
Oxford Public Works Director Bart Robinson said the affected buildings cannot reopen until a structural engineer certifies that the buildings are safe. He said he was fairly certain Ajax and the Wilson Law Firm’s inspections were completed Monday evening and should be open today.
However, structural engineers are still evaluating jcg apparel, Oxford Grillehouse and Rowdy Rebs.
A pedestrian construction walkway is being constructed outside of the damaged buildings.
“We directed the building owners to build a walkway for pedestrians to ensure their safety while repairs are going on,” Robinson said.
Robinson said while he expects the buildings’ owners to have some significant repairs, he doesn’t believe the structures to be unsafe.
“There’s some substantial repair work to the front of the buildings but we don’t believe it’s dangerous,” he said.
City Editor Alyssa Schnugg and Managing Editor Rob Sigler contributed to this report.