Two Keyes women and a baby barely escaped serious injuries late Friday when a car driven by a drunken driver lost control and crashed into their house.
The impact of the car punched a giant hole in the outer wall of a bedroom at 5344 Rhode Rd. and collapsed an interior wall into the living room, sending exploding sheetrock and possessions flying inside the house.
Carrie Smith, 30, was breast feeding her 7-month-old baby on the couch in the living room when the car hit just before midnight. Smith rolled her body to shield her baby as a wooden stud collapsed and fell onto her back. She sustained only minor scrapes.
Another occupant, 26-year-old roommate Kayci Jones was also inside the living room at the time of the crash. She said the night presented a different schedule than normal which kept her out of harm’s way. Normally Jones would have been in bed at that hour but she had a strange feeling to bed down on the couch instead. Jones’ four-year-old daughter also was not in bed – displaced into the bathroom by the Mustang – since she was spending the night at a cousin’s house which normally doesn’t happen.
“I was in the room 10 minutes before that car hit,” said Jones. “I didn’t want to be in the room by myself. It was an eerie feeling. So I bedded down on the couch and was 10 minutes into a movie when we heard a loud screech like a car was losing control and out of nowhere there was a loud boom and debris went flying everywhere. The entire car was in my room. My daughter’s bed is wiped out.
“Honestly, by the grace of God things happened the way they did.”
The California Highway Patrol reported that a heavily intoxicated Christopher Canada, 22, of Modesto, was driving his white Ford Mustang southbound on Rhode Road south of Esmail Avenue when he allowed it to drift left off the road through a chain-link fence and into the house. The Mustang was almost entirely enveloped by the house.
Occupants from a nearby party heard the crash and came running. Joe Colwell climbed into the damaged house and peeked through the window to check on the bloodied driver who was collapsed on the passenger side floorboard. Colwell kicked out the window of the Mustang to get to Canada, who was heard snoring.
Canada suffered minor to moderate injuries and was transported to Doctors Medical Center by ambulance for treatment. He was later arrested for DUI.
Neither Smith nor Jones had renter’s insurance and both lost a large amount of their possessions. Both are staying with family since the rental home was condemned as unsafe to occupy.
Terika Ramsdell, a friend of both women, is organizing a car wash and spaghetti dinner this Saturday at the Keyes Assembly of God to help the women get back on their feet. The fundraisers begin at 9 a.m. Jones and her daughter lost most of her possessions, including clothing and other personal items.