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Woodstock Secretary of State office open after U-Haul accident

WOODSTOCK – More than a month after a U-Haul truck drove through a portion of Woodstock's Secretary of State building, closing part of the office, the facility is now fully operational.

On Jan. 3, a U-Haul driver rammed into the building, causing extensive damage to the facility and closing the branch that issues driver's licenses and driving records. No one was in the building at the time of the accident.

The branch reopened Feb. 4.

The area of the building that issues titles, license plates and vehicle stickers was never closed.

Motorists who needed a license or driving records had to travel to Elgin or Libertyville, according to Illinois Secretary of State Spokesman Dave Druker.

Woodstock driver service employees also were transferred to the Elgin and Libertyville locations, said Druker, who added they have returned to the Woodstock office.

"This is probably the longest period we've been down with an incident involving the public," Druker said. "It's pretty rare."

While uncommon, there have been other incidents in the past where drivers have caused damage to Illinois Secretary of State buildings, Druker said. But nothing compared to the extent of the damage to the Woodstock office.

"We always want to do the best possible service for the public," he said. "We feel badly for those who were inconvenienced and we apologize … It was beyond our control."

Woodstock police said the U-Haul driver was experiencing a mental health episode that possibly included seeing visions, experiencing chest pains and hearing voices.

Police didn't issue any citations or charges in the accident.

- Reporter Shawn Shinneman contributed to this story.

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