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'It could have been so tragic' - neighbours react after car crashes into house

PUBLISHED: 16:08 27 March 2019 | UPDATED: 10:31 30 March 2019

A car collided with a house on Hawke Road in Ipswich.  Picture: ARCHANT

A car collided with a house on Hawke Road in Ipswich. Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

Neighbours have told of how they went to the aid of an Ipswich couple after a car crashed into their house while their young child slept upstairs.

The front of the house in Hawke Road suffered severe damage by the Vauxhall in Ipswich. Picture: CONTRIBUTEDThe front of the house in Hawke Road suffered severe damage by the Vauxhall in Ipswich. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Louise Whatling was having dinner with her friend when they heard a loud bang and when they went to investigate discovered a car had driven into the front door of the neighbour’s house, causing severe damage and rupturing a gas pipe.

Louise said: “There was dust and smoke everywhere - without even thinking I jumped through the smashed front window to try and help as I knew they had a young child.”

The young family were at home when the car crashed through the front door - the parents were believed to be downstairs just metres away from where the car crashed into the building while their four-year-old child slept upstairs.

Louise continued: “The mother was panicking and was understandably in a complete state, I was trying to keep her calm and help her reach her child.”

The Vauxhall crashed into the house around 9pm on Tuesday, March 26. Picture: CONTRIBUTEDThe Vauxhall crashed into the house around 9pm on Tuesday, March 26. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

According to Louise, she followed the mother up the damaged staircase to the back bedroom to where the young child was sleeping.

“It was awful,” continued the 26-year-old. “It was like something you see on the TV - the smell of gas made me feel sick.”

The vehicle had collided with the gas box on the front of the house, and another neighbour, who did not want to be named, reported that “the vehicle was an inch away from causing a main valve rupture”.

The neighbour also said: “We pulled the driver from the wreck and put her into recovery position. The woman started to gain consciousness, she began to struggle and wanted to get away - but we kept her detained until police arrived.”

No one was injured in the accident, which has caused severe damage to a young family's home in Hawke Road. Picture: CONTRIBUTEDNo one was injured in the accident, which has caused severe damage to a young family's home in Hawke Road. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Luckily no one was injured in the incident, but things could have been much different.

A third neighbour, who house was also damaged, said: “My husband was downstairs watching the football and thought it was a gas explosion because it was so loud.

“I was in bed upstairs and it really shook me up - it (the car) must have missed my husband by just a few inches.”

Police, fire crews, an ambulance, gas engineers and council officials were all called to the scene where a black Vauxhall had crashed into the homes.

All three emergency services were called to the scene of the crash in Hawke Road, Ipswich. Picture: CONTRIBUTEDAll three emergency services were called to the scene of the crash in Hawke Road, Ipswich. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

The driver, a 34-year-old woman, has been arrested by police on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol.

The third neighbour, who also did not want to be named, continued: “It was a complete shock and was really upsetting to see.

“It’s hard not to think about the ‘what ifs’ - it could’ve been so tragic.”

Neighbours believe that the couple had recently renovated the property and had only moved in a matter of months ago.

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