Driver crashes into house and leaves huge hole

A FORMER chauffeur hire boss partially demolished a pensioner’s home after reversing his car into the property.
The car struck the house. Picture: Kaye NicolsonThe car struck the house. Picture: Kaye Nicolson
The car struck the house. Picture: Kaye Nicolson

The crash on North Gyle Loan was so loud that one neighbour said it was like an “explosion”.

The driver, believed to be in his 60s, accidentally reversed his car into the front of James Rae’s house yesterday morning, carving a huge hole in the brickwork.

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The damage to Mr Rae’s wall and front door was so severe that his hallway and staircase could be seen from the street.

Picture: Kaye NicolsonPicture: Kaye Nicolson
Picture: Kaye Nicolson

The motorist, who is reported to have run a luxury chauffeur hire firm before retiring, was rushed to hospital after the smash.

He is not believed to have suffered any serious injuries.

His Volkswagen Tiguan left a 6ft by 6ft hole in his neighbour’s home, wrecked an electricity meter and mangled the front door.

Debris and rubble were scattered across the driveway of the two-storey home, which has been sealed off pending further safety checks.

Homeowner Mr Rae, 82, said he was in his kitchen having a cup of tea when he felt the house shake at around 10am.

“I walked through to the living room and the impact had made a lot of things fall on the floor,” he said. “It was my neighbour, who lives opposite me, who had driven into my front door.

“We have been neighbours for about 40 years.”

Surveying the wreckage, he added: “I think it’s going to be a very different Christmas this year.”

The extent of the structural damage to the house is yet to be surveyed, and the property remains sealed off with fire service tape.

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Electricians have disconnected the supply to Mr Rae’s house, and he is staying with neighbours until checks are completed.

Residents of the quiet street said they were at a loss to explain how the smash happened.

One woman, who asked not to be named, described how she had been getting ready to leave the house when she heard the loud bang. “It sounded like an explosion,” she said. “It was a hell of a noise.

Another resident said she believed the driver may have suffered a blackout while reversing out of his driveway causing him to plough through the house opposite.

A spokesman for Police Scotland commented: “This crash was purely accidental and there was no criminality involved.

“There was one person in the house at the time and he was uninjured.”