Construction truck crashes into a Santee home
SANTEE (KUSI) – A large construction truck smashed into a home while going downhill in a Santee neighborhood Monday, leaving the truck wedged inside the house.
“It came down pretty much at full speed, went into this house, and you can see from the damage it almost went through the whole house and really completely made it untenable,” said Justin Matsushita, Fire Battalion Chief for the Santee Fire Department.
The family renting the home said it went through their living room and their children’s bedrooms, but nobody was home at the time.
“I just saw the big, huge truck through the house and the back and I just started panicking,” said Harmony MacFarlane, a nearby neighbor. Harmony MacFarlane lives next door with her family. She said her heart dropped when she heard the crash early Monday morning.
“I heard the noise and I came out as fast as I could,” said Harmony MacFarlane. “I saw the smoke coming from the house so I ran over there. I started yelling in the house to see if anyone was home.”
She found the driver who had to break a window, so he could crawl out of the truck after the wreck.
The Santee Battalion Chief said he was worried the house was going to collapse when they pulled out the truck. “It’s actually holding up the structure for the most part right now,” said Matsushita. “So our concern at this point is when we pull the truck out, what’s going to happen to the structure.”
Crews worked to remove tree branches covering the truck. They slowly pulled the truck out of the home. When they did that, it did not collapse, but it was still destroyed.
The owner who rents out the house said he’s owned the property for over 40 years and once lived there for five years. “We remodeled it. We put a lot of time and effort into it,” said Richard Braun, Homeowner. “It was our first house, the whole deal. It’s definitely shocking.”
The neighbors and Braun are thankful the family wasn’t home at the time. They say it wasn’t just a close call. It was a miracle. “I’m thankful it wasn’t our house because all of us were home,” said MacFarlane. “It’s scary to think that could happen. I’m really glad their kid wasn’t home because they have a little one too. It was pretty scary.” “It’s just property damage. The driver didn’t get hurt. Nobody got hurt,” said Braun. “It can be fixed or bulldozed and rebuilt, but it’s a total blessing that nobody got hurt.”
The cause of the crash is still under investigation. The family had renter’s insurance and are going to stay with extended family.
The City Inspector red tagged the home Monday, and the owner said it’s now up to the insurance companies to assess the damage.