Family’s lucky escape after car smashes into house

The Honda car crashed through the fence at the rear of the Furgrove Crawley's Pembrooke Mews home. INNT 40-050-FP
The Honda car crashed through the fence at the rear of the Furgrove Crawley's Pembrooke Mews home. INNT 40-050-FP

A MOTHER has spoken of her family’s terrifying ordeal after a car crashed into their home causing thousands of pounds worth of damage.

The late-night drama unfolded when a vehicle being pursued by police ploughed through a fence and hit the rear of the property.

The house in Glengormely is likely to have suffered structural damage and a boiler house was destroyed after it bore the brunt of the impact.

Ciara Furgrove Crawley said she has been unable to sleep since the incident two weekends ago and her two children were left badly shaken.

The shocked youngsters missed school and one has received medication to calm her nerves.

Mrs Furgrove Crawley said she has also required tablets to deal with the stress.

At around 5.20am on Sunday 23 September she and her husband Gerard (both 33) were wakened by a loud bang. At first they thought one of their children - they have a son aged seven and a 12-year-old daughter - had made the noise, but they quickly discovered it was something much more alarming.

Mrs Furgrove Crawley explained: “I woke and thought one of my kids had fallen out of bed but when I went into the hall I could see the headlights and I heard music blaring, and then I could the see the car lying in my garden.

“At this stage my children were in hysterics. My husband phoned the police but then I saw the police outside.

“At this stage we were trying to keep the kids calm.

“The car had crashed into our boiler house and we worried about an explosion.”

It is believed that the police had received a phone call from a concerned member of the public about a suspected drink-driver travelling in a silver Honda Accord on the Antrim Road.

A police patrol then sighted the vehicle in Queen’s Park at 5.18am.

The vehicle failed to stop and fled from police.

The Honda driver tried to get away by driving up the Burnthill Road.

The road is a dead end but there is a stretch of grass at the top which leads into Pembroke and the nearby Carnmoney Road.

The motorist attempted to escape through the well-known short-cut but careered into the Furgrove Crawleys’ home at Pembroke Mews, which lies below the sloping grass bank.

The people in the car made off on foot before police arrived at the scene.

Mrs Furgrove Crawley said her children missed a few days at school because of the incident.

She said: “My boy went back on the Wednesday and my girl on Tuesday.

“My girl was so distressed I had to take her to the doctors to get medication. She had to sleep with me the next night.”

Mrs Furgrove Crawley said she has also been left distressed and nervous.

“I can’t sleep at all and I’ve been to the doctors to get tablets.

“It’s just lucky that it happened at night and my kids weren’t outside playing.”

Mrs Furgrove Crawley expects to be hit with a large bill to repair the damage caused to her home and is awaiting a response from her insurance company.

As well as the damaged boiler house, she said her house was left with two cracks running halfway up the outside walls at the rear and side.

The garden fence was also hit while garden furniture, a washing line and an expensive child’s toy were also ruined.

Mrs Furgrove Crawley expects the costs to reach several thousands of pounds.

She said building control authorities have yet to survey the cracks on the outside walls and is concerned about what damage has been caused to the structure of the house.

Mrs Furgrove Crawley is also in the process of contacting the relevant agencies in a bid to get bollards erected to stop cars accessing the grass area behind her home.

Meanwhile, police have called for the public’s help to track down the driver and occupants of the Honda, which is not believed to have been stolen.

It is believed the car had just been recently purchased and that there were four people inside, one of whom was a girl.

A police spokesman added: “The three males are all described as around 18 years old with short, dark spiky hair. The female is believed to have been around 16 years old with ginger or red hair.

“The vehicle has been seized by police and officers are appealing for information.”