By Beth Germano, WBZ-TVBy Beth Germano

HAVERHILL (CBS) – If lightning doesn’t strike twice, Haverhill homeowner Jim Curtis has a hard time believing it. He was sitting at the computer in his Amesbury Street home when an SUV plowed through the front wall landing in the living room.

“When I heard the squealing tires, I got up and the car came through right in front of me,” said Curtis.

But since his family first owned the house in 1954, it’s happened at least five times. Another car came through the same wall fifteen years ago, and nearly every side of the house has been hit. In this case, police say a teenage driver was making a left turn at a busy intersection in front of the house when he lost control.

WBZ-TV’s Beth Germano reports

“He wanted to make sure I was OK and then said he never wanted to drive again,” says Curtis. The living room is now strewn with debris from couch to chair to splintered wood, and a television that was in front of the wall is likely damaged. Fortunately the main beams on the antique home were not hit.

Curtis says the house sits at an intersection where cars accelerate and round the corner too fast, often squealing as they go. “They just push the gas all the way down and take off,” he said.

While he acknowledges his unlucky location, he has a solution and would like to petition the state to put a guardrail in front of his home. “I’m feeling a little nervous standing right here,” he said.

Police say the driver has been cited for the accident, and while Curtis is frustrated, he’s more inconvenienced with the repairs that will have to be made.

Beth Germano

Comments (153)
  1. Baldy Kirby from Atlanta says:

    Please stand up when you speak – when you talk while sitting, you sound like you’re talking through a pillow…..

    1. Bart says:

      So witty. Come up with that yourself?

  2. Frank Hicks Healy says:

    I have read about similar accidents. When the city does put up a guard rail the drivers who hit it sue the city for putting a guard rail up.

    1. Sam Hill says:

      With no guard rail, the home owner can sue the driver. Either way the driver gets sued.

      That being said, I doubt many suits are won against cities putting up guard rails for safety reasons.

      1. Jim Laubscher says:

        Simple, plant a couple of paulonia trees in two years no car can get through it.

      2. Dead Beaters says:

        Astoundingly simple to win a judgment.

        Much more difficult to collect.

      3. Randy says:

        Bamboo. 1/2 year. impenetrable. Except I don’t know if they climate there will support it.

    2. kmrod says:

      for $500-$750 he can but railroad ties sticking up out of the ground, leaving about 3′ exposed with the other 5′ buried.

      that should stop a car.

    3. Steve S in Ft. Lauderdale says:

      I had my house driven into in 1997. I thought about putting dragon teeth in the front lawn then to prevent a second occurrance. If it happens a second time I will have a moat and dragon teeth for landscaping. I would seriously consider moving if it happened five times in my lifetime.

  3. rob4lsu says:

    @John Paulstrom Southwalk
    you my friend are insane

    1. Norbert says:

      ESAD you loser.

    2. Sam Hill says:

      I agree, Southwalk is insane, or he’s doing a great imitation of an insane man. All he’s got to defend his positions are degenerate, low IQ, moronic insults. He couldn’t even win a debate with a first grader. Just ignore him, he’s not worth the trouble.

      1. ikowmorethenyou says:

        Once again, dismissing people as insane while not being able to state ones argument on facts. You both are very ignorant people (sam & Badpenny) but keep it up. The world is full of you :)

      2. Yousirareachild says:

        This is also coming from the person that doesn’t understand there are two kinds of fluoride just like there are many kinds of Nitrogen (ones present in the atmosphere, and one present in soil, fertilizer ect… Take some chem classes or STFU

    3. BadPenny says:

      I guess Southwalk hasnt realized that life expectancy has INCREASED. But that would take an IQ and like any typical liberal, he projects his own shortcoming on others.

      1. ignorancewillbeignorance says:

        If you ready the post about life expectancy way below on this page in reply to yours. You would see that you are very wrong about what you speak of.

    4. BadPenny says:

      Typical liberal, projecting their shortcomings on others.

  4. greg says:

    Given the perverse leftist ideology in California the homeowner would be responsible for damages to the car, as well as psycho treatment to the driver. Am surprised Mass hasn’t completely gone off that deep end yet given the idiots that run that state.

  5. Mr.Fitnah says:

    Yeah those Curtis have always been a problem , have been thinking of driving over there myself

  6. john says:

    2 words: guard rail.

  7. SpankySpankster says:

    Bush’s fault!

    1. Classic! It just MUST have been Bush's fault! says:


  8. Elle says:

    A house built in 1954 is hardly antique…

    1. Paul says:

      I was built in 1953 and sure do feel like an antique. LOL

    2. Sammie jo says:

      The house wasn’t built in 1954, that’s when they first owned it.
      Has the homeowner thought about putting up a wrought iron fence?

    3. chris says:

      Elle – I just know I shouldn’t bother to point this out, but the article says the family has lived there and owned the house since 1954. Nowhere does it say that the house was “built” in 1954.

  9. John says:

    They really need to regulate these out of control SUVs. I know they have drivers behind them, but these SUVs really have a mind of their own.

  10. CalM. says:

    5 times, and this guy hasn’t insisted on a guardrail or put some boulders around his property? He’s asking for it! No sympathy if, next time, he gets hurt or killed.

  11. SerfCityHereWeCome says:

    I thought Billy Joel still lived on Long Island and ran his vehicle-based demolition company there?

  12. jslab129 says:

    You would think after 2 or three times he would have put his own guardrail up. Or at least some big rocks.

    1. Mike says:

      ^ Only sensible comment on here. while everyone else is busy finding ways to insult each other for no reason, this guy actually has a solution. Put some big ass rocks in the front yard. Problem solved!

    2. jim says:

      murray “sumner redstone” rothstein. Testing desperation censorship tactics of dying corporations like Viacom.

  13. Mark Harrington says:

    “Car Crashes Through Haverhill Home For The Fifth Time”

    Wow, that’s one tough car!

  14. Lickerface says:

    Which Kennedy did it this time?

  15. Michael says:

    Depending on the angles and speed, guard rails or boulders may not help. The vehicle may be catapulted over the barrier and keep going. A concrete wall of sufficient height and depth would be better.

  16. W.C. Varones says:

    What a maroon.

    Why wouldn’t you put some boulders on the perimeter of the property?

    1. bill says:

      I was just going to suggest this. There is a house at a T intersection in our town and the home owner had the good sense to strategically place 2 huge landscaping rocks on the front lawn. Many serious wrecks on the rocks and not one has made it to the house.

    2. postofficemike says:

      Because he’s a “maroon”, just like you!

  17. NeoKong says:

    There’s a new invention called a wall.

    1. PHilton says:

      Yup!!! Can buy em at the local Wallmart.

      1. :D says:

        I bought a wall at a 7-11 before. It was terrible. The car drove right through it!

  18. Chris says:

    There are probably some laws that will prohibit him from putting up any defensive barriers that might cause harm to someone that careens off the road at a high speed. This is why post office boxes, sign posts, street lights, etc. have to be mounted on breakaway mountings. We have to protect these idiot drivers from themselves. Chalk another one up for playground safety and all attempts by nature to “cull the herd.”

  19. Paul D says:

    W style guardrails. End of story.

  20. Carlton McLemore says:

    “Our house, in the middle of our street…”

  21. stoptouchingthatmabel says:

    They should have installed a toll lane three crashes ago.

  22. Bob Conners says:

    Sign at said intersection: “SMILE… YOU’RE ON CAMERA”

    $30 dummy traffic cam…

    Problem solved!

    1. Kyle Bartley says:

      Traffic cameras do nothing to prevent accidents. At least they have not in Brittan where they have a million of them. All they do is generate income for the government. A fake speed camera would be less than useless.

      1. James says:

        Local town installed “Your Speed” signs with built in radar and light up display. Mounted below the actual speed limit sign. Motorists actually increased speed to see the sign flashing their speed in red lights. The signs were gone after a month. I think it was a trial run that failed.

  23. Lars says:

    Anyone who denigrates others simply for disagreeing with their own point of view can be described in one word: LIBERAL You probably still live in your parents basement, as you clearly have no social skills if you feel it necessary to insult total strangers on a blog. You are a sad, pathetic excuse for a human being. For someone like you to proclaim your so called superior knowledge about a completely unrelated topic proves you clearly have no life. Close the basement door on your way back down.

    1. Really? says:

      Says the name caller. Pot meet kettle.

  24. Stevo says:

    A few well placed trees serve multiple purposes.

  25. dooky says:

    God is telling you to MOVE OUT NOW!

  26. Raphael says:


    Let’s all take a deep breath and simmer down a bit, ok.

    This story is about a house that’s been hit by cars 5 times since the 1950s and a homeowner and father who, for a reason I can’t quite fathom, decides to stay in that house and flip a coin every day. How hard is it to put up your own guard-rail if the the city/county won’t do it for you??

    This isn’t about the degeneration of society or fluoride in the water supply or Stalin/Hitler-styled governmental regimes or anything else of the sort.

    And I don’t have a low IQ, I’m not inbred and I don’t tow the party line or take much stock in what the FDA says, but they play no part in any of this, so let’s keep them in on the boil for another discussion, mmmmkay?

  27. Cindy says:

    Seriously, what about a rebar concrete wall… company is trying to get rid of some concrete barriers, extremely heavy. He would never have another problem again.

  28. Hong Wang says:

    Concrete barriers with protruding 8 foot steel spires.

    1. postofficemike says:

      That is what a person in my subdivision got put in front of his house. But in this case the City installed it. It is their responsibility to keep out of control cars from your property from a road THEY constructed. I think it is, anyway.

  29. Matt says:

    I’ve seen several houses in similar positions. Large decorative boulders are the best way to go. Keeps the cars out and doesn’t look as bad as guard rails. Make sure they are the correct shape (without large flat surfaces) and positioned so they don’t propel the cars upward instead of just stopping them.

  30. Catherine says:

    You don’t need to petition the government for anything. Put in bollards and landscape around them.

  31. SolidGop says:

    I know where I’d put the Mother-In-Law bedroom if I were him…

  32. silvertogold says:

    First and foremost:
    House was built in 1954? That implies there is lead paint present, and the force of the incident, leading to airborne lead partials that were inhaled by all the occupants of the residence, the driver of the rouge vehicle, and all the first responders.

    They all need to be quarantined and observed for signs of lead poisoning. Those who exhibit the symptoms shall be exterminated to protect society and the survivors shall must be heavily compensated by the tax payers.

    I believe Mr. Southwalk is really Gary Busey in disguise. Come on Gary, fess up!!

    Side note: I feel bad for Mr. Curtis and his family and hope they give him his barrier.

    1. readthearticle says:

      That part of the house was hit before so I doubt they re-used lead paint.

      1. sammie Jo says:

        and I would guess that the house has been entirely repainted since 1954, but the poster was just being sarcastic. lol

    2. Kyle Bartley says:

      Quarantined? I don’t think lead poisoning works the way you think it works.

  33. CleanFun says:

    I could place 8 re-bar reinforced concrete posts myself for about $350, and it would have been done after the second collision. But I’d go a step further and place a false memorial with a cross and silk bouquets on the pylon most likely to be struck and most visible from the street. Actually, wife probably wouldn’t let me do the memorial, she’d rather decorate them and put a flowerpot on top of them, but the psychology behind it is solid.

  34. Esther Douglas says:

    Living in NH, we have a few homes I’ve noticed that have had very large bolder placed strategically in on the property line! Seems to me to be a great solution instead of a guardrail, which is totally unsightly! Call Brocks and have them deliver some!

    1. Kyle Bartley says:

      This is common in Michigan as well. It works.

  35. desert says:

    Put up about a 3 ft thick rebar reinforced concrete fence….let the dumb asses run into that!

  36. BadPenny says:

    The guy owns a house that has been used as a drive-thru 5 times and yet he still complains the “gubbermentt” hasnt put up a guard rail. His first mistake is relying on gubberment. His second mistake is expecting taxpayers pay for HIS problem, after all it is HIS house. He should just get some large boulders and place them on his property line by the road, it will certainly look much nicer than a guardrail! But no, he want the “gubberment” to solve his problem. Good luck with that!

    1. Kyle Bartley says:

      The government may prevent him from doing anything that would stop a car. Zoning laws and all…

  37. dave says:

    i think it says alot for how houses like that were built back in the day – hit 5 times with cars and still standing….amazing

    1. Scott Walker says:

      Tes, funny it did not burn so hot , that it freefell into it’s own footprint.

  38. Oh Grover says:

    How about some Princess Di “land mines” on the lawn?

  39. Zach Martin says:

    There’s a town in north Alabama that has a spot known as Joe’s Truck Stop. Joe lived at the bottom of a hill and trucks would come down that hill and burn up their brakes and come crashing through his yard and destroy his chicken pens and dog houses. The authorities wouldn’t do anything about it, so Joe built this concrete and steel structure, alas “Joe’s Truck Stop.” No more problem. This guy should consider that. Eventually, the county rerouted the road.

  40. Fargin Bastiges says:

    “…in front of jthe house when he lost control.”

    In front of JTHE house? Geez Beth, you get paid to write and you can’t even proofread?

  41. Alex Winter says:

    Boston drivers are the worst in America!

  42. uje says:

    Who came up with the title? After reading this I realized it wasnt the same car every time as implied in the poor title

  43. Bill in Houston says:

    Dude, build a fence!

  44. Anton Chigruh III says:

    location, location, location.

  45. Bob Seybold says:

    WOW, if I had a car that crashed into a home five times I would get rid of that car.

  46. postofficemike says:

    Same car 5 times? Not made in the USA!

  47. Norbert G. Ginsel says:

    Same house hit 5 times? Location, location location!

  48. Tom says:

    Hard to believe that the SUV managed to get around those large granite
    boulders that the homeowner installed after the 2nd crash into his house.

    Oh wait… he did nothing! Oh yea… Wait for Big Brother to come hold
    your hand and fix life’s problems for you.

  49. Sheri says:

    Have the city put in speed bumps – drivers hate them because they HAVE to slow down or mess up their car.

  50. lisacolorado says:

    Dammit, get some big rocks or make some kind of ornamental barrier or berm and stop having your house bashed in.

  51. John says:

    There is a high probability that alcohol was involved in some of the crashes. Maybe alcohol producers should pay to put up the baracades?

  52. SerfCityHereWeCome says:

    A moat full of electric eels or piranhas. Problem solved.

  53. Daisy says:

    I’ve got an idea: When every side of your house has had cars crash through it — move somewhere else.

  54. Mark Carlton says:

    Ergo, the popularity of large landscaping rocks.

  55. New York Nick says:

    Gee Joe, don’t ya think it’s time to move honey? (that’s the conversation I HAVE after the first time!!!)

  56. hkinsey3 says:

    United Van Lines is ready whenever you are.

  57. Roger Schweitzer says:

    Had a friend with a similar situation, his house was on the corner of a left turn with a long straight away approach. The drunks didn’t slow down in time to negotiate the turn and would end up in his yard.

    He put up a rock wall; the next person that didn’t make the turn hit the rock wall, launching the rocks into his house like a 21 cannon broadside in a naval battle. Those rocks did more damage than any car thought of doing. The county put up a barricade.

  58. Bill Catz says:

    We have the same thing here — a turn that people can’t seem to navigate. It took many cars in the owner’s yard before a guard rail was installed.

  59. Jim Pinter says:

    Car Crashes Through Haverhill Home For The Fifth Time Take his license away……

  60. chris says:

    stop driving your car into your house

  61. perseus317 says:

    The home owner should place two or three 5-ton boulders at strategic positions on his front lawn. Put reflectors in front of them. Then let the careless drivers wreck their cars on the boulders rather than the house.

  62. George says:

    whats the google eart location. I’d like to see this on a map

  63. Hal says:

    He needs a row of giant rocks around the edge of his yard.

  64. Obama=Failure says:

    A couple of claymore mines in that particular section of the curb would take care of the problem. Please contact Barack Obama’s uncle. He has some mexican connections when it comes to weapons.

  65. Paul says:

    Maybe some speed bumps along the road there would force traffic to slow enough that vehicles don’t go off the road?

  66. Paul S. says:

    Maybe some speed bumps along the road there would force traffic to slow enough that vehicles don’t go off the road?

  67. Dan says:

    “and nearly every side of the house has been hit”
    Time to move!!!

  68. lebaron92 says:

    Land mines !!!

  69. Architechtonic says:

    Putting in a section of guardrail will probably cost the town $50,000 in triple-billed labor costs, so unless the homeowner is willing to pay for it I doubt they’ll do it. And if he puts up his own “protection” and someone hits it and gets killed, in Massachusetts the homeowner will probably be prosecuted for manslaughter because he wasn’t allowed to erect a barrier on his own property. That’s why these problems never get solved in Massachusetts. You’d think that after Hit #4 something would have been done but it looks like someone might have to actually die before anything gets done.

  70. Reltney McFee says:

    “Car crashes through Haverhill home for fifth time” Holy Mackerel! What do you guys in MASS make your cars out of, anyway? Sheesh! My Chevy would have been toast after the first time!

  71. Mitch Pawl says:

    I would have moved after crash 2. Why wait until someone kills a family member before you finally decide to make a change?

  72. Mike W. says:

    And Beth Germano wasn’t even at the seen for the outdoor shot. That was “green screen” work with her superimposed over the front of the house. Nice and warm in the studio while wearing your coat and gloves were you Beth???

  73. window treatments for bay windows says:

    Great paintings! This is the type of info that are supposed to be shared across the internet. Shame on Google for no longer positioning this put up higher! Come on over and consult with my website . Thanks =)