Car crashes into Benton Co. home; driver charged with DUI

BENTON COUNTY, Tenn. — A car ran off the road and crashed into the side of a Benton County home Sunday evening before making a final stop in a barn in the backyard, leaving a path of destruction.

house“‘Oh my God! Somebody has ran through my house’, is what I thought,” homeowner Geraldine Kesse said.

There was no one inside the home at the time, and the driver of the vehicle was not hurt but was driving while intoxicated, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol.

“I walked up to her and I said, ‘honey are you OK?'” Kesse said of her exchange with the driver. “And she said, ‘yes ma’am, I’m sorry. I broke your house,’ and I said, ‘Honey, a house can be replaced but a body cannot be.'”

Her kitchen now sits in shambles as Kesse counts her blessings.

The car hit the house so hard it knocked an outside deck away from the house and into the backyard.Kitchen

“If I had been home or if my little grand-baby had been in the little bouncer in the kitchen while I was cooking — no.” Kesse could not finish her thought without being overcome with emotion.

It has fueled her fight for a guardrail in what she describes as a dangerous curve.

“It’s been about two years I been, not fussing, but [pushing] for a guardrail,” Kesse said.

Kesse said about six months ago they put a reflector and sign in the curve, but it did not stop the driver from going into the side of the house.

“I need help,” Kesse said. “I need somebody to recognize that there needs to be a guardrail down there, not just for me but for everybody’s safety.

It’s something she says has been an issue for years and years.

William Holliday, 73, has lived here all his life and agrees something has to be done.

“A caution light right down below the hill before they get to the curve,” Holliday suggested. “That would eliminate about 90 percent of the wrecks, and probably a guardrail in front of the house too.”

The driver of the car was charged with driving under the influence.

WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News placed several calls to the Tennessee Department of Transportation to ask questions about the highway and if they plan to do anything in the future. There has not yet been a reply.

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