On March 14 Jessica Avila, a 20-year-old junior at Humboldt State was winding down after a long day of school and work when a truck suddenly smashed into her home, damaging her yard and kitchen, and ultimately forcing her to move to a new home.
“Well I was sitting on the couch and my baby brother was in the kitchen in his high chair and I was about to go to the kitchen to make a bottle and then I heard a loud sound like a car crash,” she said. “Then I felt the whole house shaking like an earthquake, and then headlights were peeking through my kitchen.”
The driver was an 81-year-old man driving a Nissan Frontier, according to the police report.
He lost control after running a stop sign on Walnut and Holly in the southern Eureka suburb.
Witnesses said that he began swerving and missed a few houses before ending up in Avila’s kitchen.
Police and rescue crews arrived quickly, but luckily nobody was injured and the driver declined medical treatment.
Avila said that two days after the incident near her home, on March 16 another driver crashed into a parked car down the street from her home.
“A drunk was driving and missed a couple of other cars before rampaging into a white small car; he smashed the whole front driver side,” said Avila.
According to the California office of Traffic and Safety’s website, Eureka was ranked No. 2 out of 93 similarly-sized California cities for total fatal and injury collisions, No. 3 for pedestrian collisions, and No. 9 for bicycle collisions in 2010, the most recent year the statewide numbers are available. In March, a 13-year-old boy was killed after being struck by a car at J and Carson streets. Earlier in March, a drunk driver hit a Eureka High student, who survived the incident.
“I just think people should actually respect the speed limit and stop trying to multitask while driving,” said Avila. “A bit more of police patrolling for drunks wouldn’t hurt either.”
The crash left the house uninhabitable. Avila has already found a place to live.