Homeowner: 'Like an earthquake' when truck drives through house

The man who lives in a Northwest Knoxville home hit by a truck Wednesday morning says he's lucky he was not hurt. Both the truck driver and passenger died from that crash.

Early Wednesday morning, a truck was driving on the street, when the driver lost control, and plowed into a front bedroom. Knoxville Fire Department says the fuel tank ruptured, starting a fire on the house.

"Oh we had a lot of memories. They're all gone now," Dennis Hoffman said in front of his home on Sanderson Road.

Authorities cannot determine if the crash or the fire caused the fatalities.

"Felt like an earthquake," Hoffman recalled. "Came through the house. Saw the debris in the dining room."

He said he lived in the house for 43 years, and has dealt with many crashes to his house. It sits along a sharp curve, and there are no guardrails standing in the way.

"This is a problem we've been putting up with, and think it's going to happen for years, and it finally happened," Hoffman added.

Police cannot determine if the crash was caused by speeding or other factors. However, neighbors nearby said drivers regularly do not follow the posted 35 mile-per-hour speed limit.

"We had police out here across the street, up the hill, down the hill. It'll slow them down for a little while, but then they know cops are not out," neighbor Sandy Ridings said. She said a similar crash happened four days ago at another house, but no one was hurt.

After living there for more than four decades, Hoffman said he is not sure if he will continue staying in that house, at least until something is done to control this problem.

"We had (drivers) tear up the handrails, but this is the first time they hit the house this hard," Hoffman said.


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