Two young daughters had a lucky escape after a car crashed into their house on Saturday night.
Charlotte and Ruby Wyld had been relaxing in the lounge shortly before the Vauxhall Corsa ploughed into the living-room wall.
The impact brought a window frame tumbling down onto the settee, where they had been sitting just 20 minutes prior to the smash.
Their mother Helen says her children were fortunate not to have been injured, but admits that Charlotte, 16, and Ruby, 12, have been left shaken and traumatised by the incident.
The crash occurred at the family’s home at New Moor House, which is located at the notorious crossroads of the same name, where the B6341 road from Alnwick to Rothbury meets the A697.
It is the second time in eight years that a car has smashed into the Wylds’ house and Helen is concerned that it is only a matter of time until there is another crash at the site.
She is calling for action to improve the safety of the crossroads.
Reflecting on Saturday night, Helen said: “My husband Graeme and I had been at a party and left the girls at home. My daughters had spent the evening sat on the settee in our living room and only went to bed about 20 minutes before the car hit our house.
“There was a large bang and a crash. The whole house shook.
“If they had still been sat there, they would have been showered with glass and had a window frame land on their heads.
“It was really lucky that they had gone to bed. They are really quite shaken. My youngest daughter was hysterical at the time and she’s still quite wobbly now.”
The incident happened at around 10.45pm and a Northumbria Police spokeswoman said that no one in the car was injured.
Helen told the Gazette that the driver was a young lad from Bedlington and had only passed his test in November.
She said: “The car had been travelling down the B6341 from Rothbury and had not seen the crossroads and has just carried on over the A697 and into our house. There are no skid marks.”
While no one was injured, the Wylds have been left with a hefty repair job, which could take around a month to fix. Their living room is now a building site and the wall needs to be rebuilt.
Helen, 49, is also concerned that Saturday night’s crash is yet another accident at the crossroads.
She said: “I have two very traumatised daughters, a living-room ceiling that is being held up by two props, a window that will have to be replaced and all because, once again, someone didn’t see the junction and I feel that it is just a matter of time before there is a fatal accident here.
“We have lived here for 15 years and have seen many accidents.
“We have now had two cars try to come into the living room, the last one being about eight years ago.
“Thankfully, no one was seriously hurt, but it traumatised my other daughter Beth, who is 19 now, but was about 11 or 12 at the time.
“And we haven’t, as yet, cleared the damage from the last car that didn’t see the junction and ended upside down in our garden. This happened at the back end of last year and took out a couple of plum trees and killed several of our hens.
“We don’t feel safe and we do worry – we have worried for a long time. Sometimes they come down that hill (from Rothbury) so fast. Whenever it is icy or foggy, my heart is in my mouth and I am just waiting for something to happen.”
Helen, who also has son Jack, 21, is now pushing for something to be done to improve the safety of the crossroads.
She said: “The safety of these crossroads needs to be improved – a stop sign and having a rumble strip could make a big difference.
“Even if I have to put up signs in my field, telling people to slow down, I will do it. We can’t live with the threat of another car coming into the house, because next time we might not be so lucky.”
The crossroads are in the Longhoughton ward of county councillor Kate Cairns. She has already been in contact with the Wylds and described the incident as shocking and unacceptable.
Coun Cairns said: “This junction has been the location of several crashes over the years. The A697 is one of the most dangerous A-roads in the country and the council carried out a well-needed safety review last year.
“The report identified this stretch as a high-risk priority. Sums have already been spent on safety improvements, with more due this coming year, but I continue to highlight the dangers of this junction along with other blackspots such as Powburn, and to ensure such measures are effective.
“I will be discussing with Coun Ian Swithenbank, cabinet member responsible for this area, as a matter of urgency.”
The incident was just outside Rothbury councillor Steven Bridgett’s ward. He said: “This is not the first time this has happened and I really think we need to look seriously at some solutions for altering/improving the junction at Moor House, that would make it safer for motorists accessing the A697, but also for Mrs Wyld and her family.”