SEARSPORT, Maine — A sleepy lobsterman escaped injury Thursday afternoon when his car went off the road, struck a tree and then a house before ultimately coming to a halt.
Joshua Weeks, 20, of Searsport, had been driving west on U.S. Route 1 through downtown Searsport at about 2:30 p.m. when he evidently fell asleep at the wheel, according to Searsport Police Chief Dick LaHaye.
Weeks’ 1997 Ford Escort veered across the major coastal thoroughfare, hit a telephone pole and went past a large maple tree before striking another, smaller tree.
“[That] catapulted him airborne and he literally skidded across the front of a home,” LaHaye said later Thursday afternoon.
The car broke the window of the house at 113 E. Main St. before landing on its roof on the lawn of the home.
“He was wearing his seat belt and walked away from the accident,” LaHaye said.
Homeowner Linda Lewis, who works at Waldo County General Hospital, said Thursday evening that a friend had called her to tell her about the crash. She returned home to find the overturned car in her yard, a scared Labrador inside the house and some damage done to the front wall, window and landscaping.
“It could have been a lot worse,” she said. “I’m just glad he’s OK. That’s the big thing, when you see something like that, it just takes your heart. It’s just a blessing that he walked away from that.”
She said that a neighbor told her there had been a terrible noise when the crash happened and then expected to find that the driver was critically injured.
“But the boy crawled out from under the car,” Lewis said.
The chief said Weeks fishes out of Stonington and had been up for many hours that day.
After the accident, the Ford Escort was totaled and the home sustained approximately $1,800 in damages to its interior and exterior. No one except the dog was at the home at the time of the accident, LaHaye said.
Searsport Ambulance and Searsport Fire Department both responded to the crash, with the fire department managing traffic while the ambulance crew checked Weeks for injuries.