Driver suffers medical condition, hits house

A vehicle struck a house northeast of Rockford. (Oct. 20, 2014)

COURTLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — A 69-year-old man was hospitalized Monday after his SUV crashed into a house.

It happened on 14 Mile Road near Myers Lake Road in Courtland Township.

Investigators at the scene say the Gowen man was heading westbound on 14 Mile when he crossed the road, went through a drainage ditch and then a yard, and then struck the house.

The crash appears to be caused by a medical condition. Witnesses told investigators they saw the driver’s head was down at the time of the crash.

One person, homeowner Carole DeJonge, was home at the time of the crash, but was not near the part of the building that was hit.

DeJonge said crashes at the intersection of 14 Mile Road and Myers Lake roads are common. She said she was sitting in her living room Monday when she heard a “crunch,” and thought it was just another crash. Then she heard a second “crunch” and “the house kind of exploded.”

“I ran into the bedroom and the car was through the wall, so I ran into the next bedroom and looked out the shade, and he was slumped over the wheel, so I immediately called 911,” Dejonge said.

Alcohol is not believed to be a factor. The driver, Bruce Beck,was wearing his seat belt. His air bag did not deploy, the sheriff’s office said. It’s not clear if the impact was not serious enough to deploy the air bag or if there was a mechanical failure.

Beck was taken to the hospital with a life-threatening medical condition.

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