VIDEO: Unbelievable footage of business ram raid
DEVASTATION is the only word to describe what Glenwood servo manager Chris Yates found when he arrived at work.
Mr Yates was responding to repeated Friday night calls from his Security contractor.
He arrived to find the service station smashed and out of action after an unidentified man had ram-raided the roadhouse. which Mr Yates helps run for Pacific Petroleum.
The unidentified intruder ploughed into the roadhouse's retail section in a white flat tray Toyota Hilux utility, which police say had been stolen in Maryborough a couple of days before.
CCTV footage shows the driver barging and reversing the utility and smashing counters, shelves, fridges, displays and other stock and equipment.
Mr Yates says it seems the man was attempting to back the ute up to the store's ATM, but could not perform the maneouvre successfully in the confined customer area.
At one point he alights from the vehicle, apparently to check if the ATM is bolted down.
"They all are, but he didn't know that apparently," Mr Yates said yesterday.
"You can't see his face because he was wearing a full face motorcycle helmet at the time.
But Mr Yates had no words at all for what happened next.
"There are a lot of good people at Glenwood," he said yesterday, as he told of the spontaneous community effort which had the shop trading again by Sunday morning.
Police are looking for the man who did the damage and Mr Yates says there may be several leads.
Mr Yates, says the business suffered losses of between $100,000 and $300,000.
"I thought it would take at least five days to clean up the mess. I thought that's how long we would have to be closed.
"But we were open in one day.
"Sunday morning 6am, we were open."
And that, he says is thanks to an enormous amount of good will from a lot of people.
"There was one bloke who offered equipment and he invited me to his shed where he had warmers and fridges and I just said, 'I'll take that and that and that.'
"I don't know him other than that.
"The community got together and stood behind us and helped with the cleaning up and repairs.
"Two tradies got together and rebuilt the door frames so we could open and close.
"We had free bollards installed and the Chemist is getting some too, so this can never happen again.
"People rang up to ask if we needed a hand and I had to tell several of them we couldn't fit any more people into the shop," he said.
"A new computer system was installed on Saturday afternoon.
"A pie warmer and baine marie were hired. A cake display fridge was borrowed from a fellow who not only lent it to us, he delivered it."
Mr Yates says he is convinced the intruder was after the ATM machine.
It hardly had any money in it and he couldn't move it, but he did a least $100,000 worth of damage - "between that and $300,000 worth," he said.
Mr Yates says he received a phone call from the security company letting him know the alarms were going off.
"I got here as quick as I could. The police were just behind me," the servo's site manager said.
The damage was considerable.
The dual cab ute used in the ram raid had smashed through the glass front doors of the shop and destroyed stock and caused enormous damage to the inside of the business.
"Jennifer Jean, retail manager of Pacific Petroleum, said the person had walked over to the ATM, tried to lift it and found it bolted down.
"He tried for the ATM," she said.
"He didn't take anything but he did $100,000 worth of damage."
Mr Yates said the servo had been robbed late last year in an armed robbery.
"They're in jail," he said. "They were dumb, this latest one is dumber."