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Truck pulling horse trailer crashes into Potter Township house

Firefighters work the scene of the accident. A truck pulling a horse trailer ran into the home located at 145 Old Fort Rd. in Spring Mills, Pa. owned by Peg Confer July 31, 2015.
Firefighters work the scene of the accident. A truck pulling a horse trailer ran into the home located at 145 Old Fort Rd. in Spring Mills, Pa. owned by Peg Confer July 31, 2015. CDT photo

Friday morning didn’t quite go as David Catherman had planned.

He, his wife, Bonnie, and mother-in-law Peg Confer were playing cards at a table in the kitchen of Confer’s home at 145 Old Fort Road when they heard a “loud screech” and then a crash before a truck plowed into the home, Catherman said.

“We were just sitting there playing cards and could hear the brakes squeal,” he said. “It was a very long squeal and then there was a truck through the living room.”

No one was injured when the truck driven by Raymond Stoltzfus, 18, of Honey Brook, pulling a horse trailer drove through the wall of the house just before 11 a.m. Friday.

“Had we not been playing cards, we probably would have been sitting right there in the living room,” Catherman said as he pointed to the area where the truck had gone through.

Rockview state Trooper Michael Glentzer said a vehicle was headed north on state Route 144, Old Fort Road, when the driver turned left into a driveway, and a truck behind the vehicle failed to stop.

In an effort to stop, Glentzer said, Stoltzfus swerved to the left, crossing the southbound lane of Old Fort Road and crashing into the living room wall of the house.

Stoltzfus and a passenger, Ivan Petersheim, 44, of Gap, were not injured, and neither were three juveniles in the truck. All of the occupants were using seat belts and child seats. The truck was pulling three horses, which were not injured, Glentzer said.

He did not say whether the driver of the truck would be cited.

Catherman said the truck driver told him that he had attempted to stop, but the horses threw off the balance of the truck and trailer.

Centre Hall Fire Chief Philip Orndorf said a tow truck removed the truck from the home while first responders attempted to contain more than 100 gallons of diesel fuel that leaked from the truck.

Route 144 was closed in both directions for about an hour from state Route 45 to U.S. Route 322.

Boalsburg, Centre Hall, Gregg Township, Pleasant Gap, Potters Mills and Spring Mills fire companies assisted at the scene, along with Penns Valley EMS, the state Department of Transportation, state police, the Centre County Sheriff’s Office and a Penn State hazardous materials team.

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