The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Local News

February 28, 2014

Car rams into bedroom, child unhurt

HERMITAGE — Fourteen-month-old Grace is not a very good sleeper, but nothing was going to wake her Thursday morning.

Not even a car slamming into the wall next to her crib.

“She slept through it,” said her mother, Monica Clark of 1918 Shenango Valley Freeway, Hermitage.

The crash at 12:19 a.m. woke Clark and the girl’s father, who asked not to be named.

“It sounded like an explosion,” Clark said.

The crash knocked out power and Clark and the girl’s father were in the dark as they tried to check on their daughter and figure out what happened.

“(The girl’s father) walked past her door and said, ‘There’s a car on fire outside.’” Clark said.

Clark showed where the impact cracked studs in the bedroom wall and knocked sections of drywall off the studs.

Grace did not appear to have been injured at the scene but was taken to a local hospital as a precaution.

“She’s fine,” Clark said. “She never cried. She just looked at all the lights. She was very lucky.”

The driver of the car was not so lucky. Darin Sagenich, 21, of 1410 Robertson Road, Hermitage, was taken to a Pittsburgh hospital. Clark said the girl’s father went to check on him and there was no sound from the car, which had flipped onto its roof and caught fire.

Hermitage firefighters freed Sagenich from the car

“I just hope that the gentleman is OK,” Clark said of Sagenich.

A message left with the hospital that police said Sagenich was taken to was not returned.

Hermitage police said Sagenich was eastbound on the freeway when the car went off the right side of the road, hitting a traffic sign and a utility pole.

The car zoomed up an embankment, which launched it into the air, and it came down just before hitting the front west corner of the house.

Police Chief Brian Blair said the crash report was incomplete because of the amount of time investigators were at the scene, and he did not know if speed, road conditions, alcohol or drug use were factors.

The girl’s father showed where the utility pole had been sheared at ground level. A section of it 4 or 5 feet long was thrown about 100 feet onto the roof of the house.

The car also scattered large rocks, including shooting one over the garage, the father said.

The impact ripped aluminum siding off the corner of the house. A section was waving in Thursday’s stiff morning winds.

Inside the girl’s room, light was coming from outside through a small slit in the original wood siding.

“I don’t think there’s anything majorly damaged,” said City Inspector Russell V. Penn Jr. “It’s kind of early in the evaluation.”

Penn did not ask that the family leave the home, and Clark noted they were told not to clean up anything until an insurance adjuster had been there.

The impact shattered the bathroom window in the room next to the girl’s.

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