A car struck a gas line outside the Forest Park National Bank and Trust at 7331 Roosevelt Road Friday morning, causing a gas leak outside the bank’s front entrance.

Police received word of the incident at 8:36 a.m., and upon arriving at the scene evacuated the bank and closed off Circle Avenue from Roosevelt to Fillmore and Roosevelt from Harlem to Thomas.

Roosevelt was reopened after about half an hour, while Circle remained closed until about 10 a.m., according to Sgt. Eric Bell of the Forest Park Police Department.

Bell said that the bank would be closed for the remainder of the day as workers from Nicor Gas attempt to fix the leak.

Two fire trucks and several firefighters were at the site of the accident Friday morning.

Several bank employees remained in the bank’s parking lot to observe the scene, but said that they were unable to see the crash from inside the bank.

Bell said that the driver appears to have lost control of his car, though a definite cause of the accident has not yet been determined. Police officers at the scene speculated that the driver might have panicked after accidentally hitting the gas instead of the brakes.

The driver, whose name has not been released, was hospitalized as a precautionary measure, but Bell said he did not believe the driver had suffered any injuries.

The driver was apparently an elderly man, and Bell said that the police department would recommend to the secretary of state that his drivers license be reconsidered. 

For a more complete report, check next Wednesday’s Forest Park Review.