Utah family describes terrifying near-miss after garbage truck crashes into their home

Oct 11, 2022, 6:25 PM | Updated: Oct 12, 2022, 11:19 am

SPANISH FORK, Utah — One person is in the hospital after a garbage truck crashed into a home in Spanish Fork.

“The dining room is in shambles, furniture everywhere, bricks are everywhere,” said homeowner Daniel Raith.

The crash happened at approximately 7:40 a.m. Tuesday at the home near 300 North and 200 East, where minutes earlier, Raith had been standing in his dining room feeding his three cats.

“It was like thunder just came through my house,” Raith said.

The garbage truck jumped the curb and crashed through Raith’s garage and into the dining area, sending smoke and debris throughout the home. Raith and his husband were on the opposite side of the house when it hit, as was a third person who is renting a room in their home.

“I walked out and thought our roof caved in and it was smoking. I couldn’t see very well,” Raith said.

One injured after garbage truck crashes into Spanish Fork home

Raith said he tried to get to the driver of the garbage truck, but the surroundings were unstable and the dining area was filled with debris.

“The wheels were still spinning on the truck and creating a big cloud of smoke everywhere,” Raith said.

Spanish Fork police say it appears the driver of the garbage truck suffered a seizure, losing consciousness behind the wheel.

“When our officers arrived, the driver was still inside the cab of the truck unconscious,” said Lt. Cory Slaymaker with the Spanish Fork Police Department. “He has been taken to Spanish Fork Hospital for treatment.”

Slaymaker said Tuesday afternoon the driver is now alert, suffering only minor injuries in the crash.

“It could have been much worse,” Slaymaker said. “There is a lot of structural damage to the home, but we’re glad there were no occupants in the home that were injured.”

As the garbage truck was pulled from the home, Raith and his husband stood nearby, trying to process the damage it caused.

“I’m in shock,” Raith said. “I look at that and I just feel numb right now.”

The Red Cross is helping the couple and their renter find temporary shelter, however, finding a location that will also accept their two dogs and three cats has been a challenge, according to Raith.

“We have Newt and Jonesy and Xeno,” Raith said, describing his three cats who went missing after the crash but were later found.

Repairs to the house could take weeks, possibly even months, according to Raith, who has lived at the home for about four years.

“I’m still kind of shaking from it,” he said.

But despite the destruction, Raith said he is choosing to remain positive about the situation.

“I’m counting my lucky stars right now,” Raith said. “The fact that I was just in that room and left, I’m just happy that I’m here.”

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Utah family describes terrifying near-miss after garbage truck crashes into their home