Grandfather's car crashes into front of house in Finchley

Grandfather's car spins out of control and crashes into front of house

The Mini Estate skidded into the front porch of a house after crashing into a car on the other side of the road

The wheel was sheared off and thrown yards from where the car ended up

First published in News
Last updated
Times Series: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A grandfather “could have been killed” after his car span out of control in the middle of a busy road and smashed into the front of a house.

The 80-year-old was driving his black Mini hatchback through Long Lane, Finchley, when he hit a parked Volkswagen Polo and skidded into the front porch of a house on the other side of the road.

One wheel sheared off and was thrown yards from where the car ended up, but it is not known whether this happened before the first crash or as a result of it.

The impact destroyed part of the wall of the front porch and wrecked the front of the man’s 2011-plate car.

Speaking from the scene of the crash, his daughter-in-law, who did not want to be named, said: “As it is, it is just a lump of metal and a wheel, but I feel sick at the thought that someone could have been walking down that road. He could have been killed. He is lucky to be alive.

“I’m amazed the wheel has managed to come off as I’ve never heard of anything like that before. I just don’t know what could have caused it.

“It’s bizarre. I think something must have happened to the car.”

The impact caused the house next door’s metal gate to break away from its hinges and shattered the flower pots in their front garden.

Nobody was home at the time and police are still trying to ascertain the circumstances surrounding what happened.

The driver is currently being treated at the Royal Free Hospital, in Hampstead for a sprained wrist and shock.

Although the man, who lives in East Finchley, was left shaken up during the incident his daughter-in-law said he has “always been a good driver”.

He worked as a stockbroker in central London until the age of 70, driving into the city every day.

His daughter added: “He isn’t like a usual 80-year-old, he is very trendy. He’s always been very careful in the car and kept it in immaculate condition.

“He absolutely loves driving but he feels very shaken up, so I hope this doesn’t knock his confidence.

“The whole family are really upset – but he's ok and so is everyone else. That’s the main thing.”

Comments (4)

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9:55pm Tue 5 Aug 14

Neville Longbottom says...

Looking for excuses to not blame the driver.

If he kept the car in immaculate condition, the wheel and suspension would not fall off.

And he wouldn't have died if he hit someone, they would have died.

From the story, it would be easy to guess that the car didn't "spin out of control," it hit a parked car, so it was never really in control.
Looking for excuses to not blame the driver. If he kept the car in immaculate condition, the wheel and suspension would not fall off. And he wouldn't have died if he hit someone, they would have died. From the story, it would be easy to guess that the car didn't "spin out of control," it hit a parked car, so it was never really in control. Neville Longbottom
  • Score: -1

9:30am Sat 9 Aug 14

Adele Winston says...

To write that his car 'spins out of control' is incorrect. He lost control of the car. Your journalist implies that something happened to the driver. I hope he has to take a test before he gets behind the wheel again.
To write that his car 'spins out of control' is incorrect. He lost control of the car. Your journalist implies that something happened to the driver. I hope he has to take a test before he gets behind the wheel again. Adele Winston
  • Score: 1

11:05am Sun 10 Aug 14

Keifie says...

As someone who rushed outside on heariinf the bang, thishas nothing to do with the roadworthyness of the car.
This is pretty normal for that part of Long Lane.
People drive past the park quickly, the road is wider, they slow down for the crossroads (sometimes) and then speed up as the road widens again.
BUT it then bends and narrrows leaving drivers who are not really paying atttention to the road conditions with nowhere to go (due care and attention) and, as in this case, end up with a reasonably high speed collision - this time with the front corner of another car. The wheel, suspension and drive shaft were ripped off (can't do that without a fair amount of speed) and the car ended up gouging the road as it veered out of control in to a wall opposite.
The front end of the car was severely mashed up with the horn jammed on despite removing the keys.

(Not so long ago, another car driven by someone of a simlar age went out of control and ended up disposing of hedge and railings and almost embedded in a doorway - only the hegdge took off most of the speed as it was ripped up and shoved in to the doorway.
This was directly opposite the recent incident.)

Damage looks far too great to have been a slow event, too much energy dispersed in wrecking a car, a wall, metal railings, wheelie bins.
Top marks to the Paramedic who attended quickly and to all the neighbours and passers by who, despite a near miss, were more concerned about the driver.

IT IS FAR TOO COMMON ON THIS PART OF LONG LANE.
DRIVERS ARE GOING TOO FAST AND TOO EAGER TO AIM FOR A PASSING PLACE. CONSIDERING THIS SORT OF SELFISH BEHAVIOUR BLOCKS THE ROAD FOR AGES - IT IS FAR BETTER TO WAIT A FEW SECONDS THAN ATTEMPT A NAROW GAP AT OVER 30MPH.
As someone who rushed outside on heariinf the bang, thishas nothing to do with the roadworthyness of the car. This is pretty normal for that part of Long Lane. People drive past the park quickly, the road is wider, they slow down for the crossroads (sometimes) and then speed up as the road widens again. BUT it then bends and narrrows leaving drivers who are not really paying atttention to the road conditions with nowhere to go (due care and attention) and, as in this case, end up with a reasonably high speed collision - this time with the front corner of another car. The wheel, suspension and drive shaft were ripped off (can't do that without a fair amount of speed) and the car ended up gouging the road as it veered out of control in to a wall opposite. The front end of the car was severely mashed up with the horn jammed on despite removing the keys. (Not so long ago, another car driven by someone of a simlar age went out of control and ended up disposing of hedge and railings and almost embedded in a doorway - only the hegdge took off most of the speed as it was ripped up and shoved in to the doorway. This was directly opposite the recent incident.) Damage looks far too great to have been a slow event, too much energy dispersed in wrecking a car, a wall, metal railings, wheelie bins. Top marks to the Paramedic who attended quickly and to all the neighbours and passers by who, despite a near miss, were more concerned about the driver. IT IS FAR TOO COMMON ON THIS PART OF LONG LANE. DRIVERS ARE GOING TOO FAST AND TOO EAGER TO AIM FOR A PASSING PLACE. CONSIDERING THIS SORT OF SELFISH BEHAVIOUR BLOCKS THE ROAD FOR AGES - IT IS FAR BETTER TO WAIT A FEW SECONDS THAN ATTEMPT A NAROW GAP AT OVER 30MPH. Keifie
  • Score: 0

1:37pm Sun 10 Aug 14

Mr. Datchery says...

I used to live in Long Lane and would support what Keifie says. The 'phantom bus stop' near the junction with Squires Lane doesn't help either. Many residents, myself included would park with two wheels on the pavement so as to leave more space for passing traffic. This came to the attention of our wonderful Council and one day all those who had parked in this way were ticketed. Permitting parking on the pavement, and marking out parking bays would have been more sensible, but as I said we were dealing with Barnet Council.
I used to live in Long Lane and would support what Keifie says. The 'phantom bus stop' near the junction with Squires Lane doesn't help either. Many residents, myself included would park with two wheels on the pavement so as to leave more space for passing traffic. This came to the attention of our wonderful Council and one day all those who had parked in this way were ticketed. Permitting parking on the pavement, and marking out parking bays would have been more sensible, but as I said we were dealing with Barnet Council. Mr. Datchery
  • Score: 0

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