Deorio's Pizza Inn at the Cross Country Plaza was filled with shattered glass and smoke today after a Ford 150 pickup crashed through the glass window, employees said.
The driver of the truck and a Columbus police officer who was dining at the 3201 Macon Road restaurant were injured in the crash which occurred about 11 a.m.
Lori Harris said the Italian eatery will be closed until repairs can be completed. Other than the wall with the plate glass, the business had a damaged rear wall that stopped the truck about 20 feet inside the business.
Patrick Doherty, an employee, said he was standing in the kitchen when the noise got his attention. "All of a sudden I heard this loud crash," he said. "I saw the roof cave in."
The building quickly filled with smoke. "I guess he still had his foot on the gas," Doherty said. "He kept going."
Employees said the man driving the pickup appeared to have been stricken by a possible seizure before the accident.
Crews were busy picking up shattered pieces of glass and damaged pieces of the building. The insurance adjuster hasn't been to the business yet, but Harris expects damages to top $50,000.
Harris said customers will have to wait until the work is completed. "We are going to do that just as quick as we can," she said of the repairs.
The restaurant has been around since 1961. It serves a variety of Italian dishes to a very loyal customer base.