Cars hit Middletown home twice in a week; homeowners want action

MIDDLETOWN, Pa (WHTM) — Twice in one week, cars have hit a home off Route 441 in Middletown. The homeowners say this week’s accidents are not the first time.

“I was in the house with my children. I heard this huge thud and the whole house shook,” said homeowner Rob Schanke. On Tuesday, a suspected impaired driver went off Route 441 and into the Schanke’s home off Nissley Drive.

“Came through our yard, took up these 17-pound landscaping bricks, dragged them all the way to the house, right where the kids were just playing,” Schanke said.

The car hit the home, cracking its foundation. Friday morning, another car barrelled into the driveway.

“I hear a crashing sound. I knew immediately, I recognized the same sound. I knew something happened,” Schanke said.

A driver apparently fell asleep at the wheel, drove into the Schanke’s driveway and hit a car and the garage. Schanke says his kids were in the area of the accidents moments before.

“I can’t let them out in the front yard anymore,” he said. “It’s just not a safe environment. We don’t feel safe here anymore.”

The Schankes say accidents on and around their property have been happening for years. PennDOT says it will not put up guide rail, saying they do not install them to protect private property.

“Really, what we need to do is some type of traffic study to take a look at what’s really going on there, what’s the crash history, and what are the conditions of the road,” PennDOT spokesman Greg Penny said.

The Schankes say something needs to be done because traffic on Route 441 is only increasing.

“My fear is that these accidents aren’t going to decrease, they’re only going to increase,” Schanke said.

Lower Swatara Township says they are reaching out to PennDOT to see what can be done. Schanke says they are looking to put up more barriers along their property.

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