'It was like God came down and just smacked the tire out of the way just in time'

SILVERDALE, Wash. -- The Washington State Patrol is calling it a freak accident -- wrong place, wrong time.  But the young couple who survived when a semi's tire came flying through their car windshield on the highway feel lucky to be alive.

The man and woman who were in the car both requested that their names not be used for this story.

"I was thankful to be alive, I didn't want to have to say goodbye to my kids," said the woman who was in the car.

"I don't understand how we made it; it was like God came down and just smacked the tire out of the way just in time," the man said.

State troopers say a tractor-trailer tire busted through the car's windshield as the couple drove down State Route 303 headed for Silverdale on Tuesday afternoon.

"The semi truck was driving two lanes over and I saw his tire start to wobble and it spun, it was coming straight at me and if it weren't for the steering wheel, I probably would have lost my life," the woman said. said.

She has cuts on her hands, and he his head hit the dashboard.

"I ducked down and this tire just, boom, it sounded like a big bomb went off and I look over and I thought she got smashed in the face," he said.

What's worse, the couple said they have recently fallen on hard time and had just bought the 1999 Honda Civic 10 minutes earlier.

"It was for her to go to work and now its totaled; now we have nothing," he said.

While the investigation is still under way, state troopers say the driver of the semi told them he had just had new tires put on the rig, and there may have been an issue with the way the tire was mounted.

Both  say they're just grateful to be alive.

"This is really hard for me. I can't get it to stop replaying in my head," he said.

The State Patrol said the truck driver is not being held responsible. The couple said they're working with the truck driver's insurance company to help with the damages.