Auto Accidents?

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davintosh's picture
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 554

We've talked about the cars we drive before... How about sharing some good accident stories? Hopefully ones with happy endings.

I'll start things off... Back in 1989 I was driving back home from my in-law's house on a dark stretch of highway with my pregnant wife and 16 month old daughter in our little Honda Civic wagon. Another car travelling the same direction as me -- and about 1/4 mile ahead -- suddenly pulled over to the shoulder and backed up. I was a little puzzled by that, but thought they were maybe changing drivers or something, so I slowed a little and moved to the center of the road as I passed them.

What I didn't know was that the other car had hit a 900lb heifer that had wandered onto the road, and as I sped toward them the cow lay dying in the middle of the road. A black cow. On a moonless night. On an asphalt highway. I faintly remember seeing something in the road before we hit it; also a faint recollection of the driver of the other car jumping out just as we zipped past. But it was too late. We hit the cow dead-on at about 60mph.

Near as I can deduct from what followed, the body of the cow rolled under the bumper of the car and launched us in the air. The car somersaulted and came down on the right-front fender and proceeded to tumble and roll down the highway. You can see photos of the car's remains here. Pretty nasty. Not a bit of sheet metal that wasn't scratched or dented.

As for us, we fared pretty well. The people in the other car ran to our aid right away, and were pretty amazed to see us still kicking. Their car -- an old Chevy wagon -- was still driveable, so they drove my wife & daughter to the next house along the highway, which just happened to be the home of a doctor (an internist), and he went to work checking them over. I was still somewhat coherent, and realizing that our car was sitting in the middle of the highway with no lights (the battery was crushed) I flagged down the next passing car to see if they would stay there with flashers on until the authorities arrived. Two people stopped, and neither would help. I was pretty disgusted.

After a few minutes the volunteer fire department from a nearby town showed up; when they saw the wreckage they figured we were in really, really bad shape, so they called in a helicopter to get us to the hospital. The doctor had called for an ambulance a few minutes earlier, so it arrived at the doctor's house first. By that time I had wandered the 1/4 mile or so to the doctor's house, and the EMT's checked the three of us over. I rememeber hearing the helicopter land, but the ambulance crew & the doc had things under control, so they were waved off.

My wife had started having contractions right away (our son was born about 2 months later), and we had no desire to birth a premie baby in the back of an ambulance, so they wanted to get her to the hospital ASAP. I was in pretty good condition -- a mild concussion, a bruised breastbone (from the shoulder strap catching me on the first couple of impacts), and the skin on a couple of fingers roughed up a bit (from my hand hitting the pavement as we rolled, after the windshield blew out on the first impact.) They had me lay down on a gurney in the ambulance, but they didn't strap me in. The 10 miles to the hospital were a bit scary as I tried my best to keep from falling off. I still don't know if I was supposed to have been strapped down or what.

It all turned out ok; my wife was held overnight for observation, and released the next day when the contractions subsided. My daughter also had a slight concussion, but recovered with no problem. The car, however, did not fare well. We did get a decent settlement from the insurance company, and bought a good replacement for it. The other family that had hit the cow first (mom, dad & 2 kids) had some troubles dealing with what they saw -- our car hitting the cow and flying through the air. Last I heard from them they were doing ok though. They had sought some legal remedy from the owner of the cow, but as one of the highway troopers had said that night, a 900lb cow will go wherever it wants to go, fence or no fence, so the farmer couldn't be held liable. In the legal realm, a run-in with livestock is considered an "act of God" or something that no person can control.

The week following the accident my wife & I flew to the Los Angeles area for my sister's wedding. Her new hubby's family is pretty well-to-do, and we got some raised eyebrows when we mentioned the cow when asked about the accident. Such hicks from the hinterlands!

So... That's my most memorable incedent. How 'bout you all?

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Reverend Darkness's picture
Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 502
Oh... sure...

... you ask us to contribute our stories, but we're supposed to follow that?

OK...

It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon in Daytona. Around lap 72, I experienced a massive drop in oil pressure...

...

Seriously, though:

April 27, 2002

I started feeling weird early in the day. I even called my wife and asked her if she felt wierd. Like 'ominous and forboding' kinda wierd. She asked if what I felt was bad, and I said "Well, I can't tell if it's bad... just something big... something is about to happen..."

On my way home, I found out what it was.

On Hwy 287, there is a cross-street south of Mansfield called Lone Star Rd. The lights used to be just flashing yellow for 287 and flashing red for Lone Star Rd. This means that 287 had the right of way. Always.

I was travelling South on 287 at about 60 mph. As I approched the intersection at Lone Star Rd., a black Mercedes comes from my right, only pauses at what is supposed to be a full stop for him, and then pulls out into the intersection. I destinctly remember seeing the back of his left ear, as if he were looking down into the passenger seat.

I slammed on my brakes, let go of the wheel, and decided that this wasn't going to kill me. It didn't.

Keep in mind that I'm driving a Civic at 60 mph.

There is a full three seconds of my memory that is completely gone. I remember up to one second before the impact, but the second before, the second of, and the second after are gone. The next thing I remember is the powder from the airbag choking me, so I crawl out of the car and stumble into an upright position. I see several people running over. I yell out, "Does anyone have a cell phone?" One person responds that they are calling 911 at that moment. I yell out, "Does anyone else have a cell phone?" A young man by the name of Bobby Wempe (I will remember his name the rest of my life) lets me use his phone to call my wife and tell her the news... That I was in a wreck, the car is totalled, and I have no effin clue what's going on.

When the paramedics arrive, they check my pulse and blood pressure. Then they check it again and give me a funny look. I ask them what's up and they say that my vitals are reading normal. I have to tell them that I usually read very low, so I'm probably pretty elevated if I'm reading normal. I also explain that I think I'm going into shock, as I was feeling a chill, so if I could walk around, I might be able to work some of the adrenaline out. They look at me funny, but agree, and help me walk it out a bit.

I ended up with massive chest bruising from the airbag, some scrapes on my arms from the same, a chunk of flesh out of my knee from my key (it was bent at about 120 degrees) and a hyper-extended ankle. So, from experience, I can tell you that the safety systems within the Honda Civic are top notch.

What happend after... well... that's another story.

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davintosh's picture
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 554
Re: Oh... sure...

Reverend Darkness wrote:

What happend after... well... that's another story.

And after that, you're going to hold out on me? nuh uh. Give it up, Rev.

How'd the bozo in the Mercedes fare?

(edit)

Reverend Darkness wrote:

On Hwy 287, there is a cross-street south of Mansfield called Lone Star Rd. The lights used to be just flashing yellow for 287 and flashing red for Lone Star Rd. This means that 287 had the right of way. Always.

I was travelling South on 287 at about 60 mph. As I approched the intersection at Lone Star Rd., a black Mercedes comes from my right, only pauses at what is supposed to be a full stop for him, and then pulls out into the intersection.

snip...

Keep in mind that I'm driving a Civic at 60 mph.

Did you get cited at all in this? Around here a flashing yellow light means that you're to slow to 25mph and proceed with caution. Is it different in TX?

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Reverend Darkness's picture
Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 502
Re: Oh... OK...

davintosh wrote:

How'd the bozo in the Mercedes fare?

Well... OK...

When my 'lil Japanese engineered car nailed that mid-sized German engineered car in the left rear, I sent it spinning 50 feet in front of me and 15 feet to my left. I smashed in the rear door, broke the back axle, and shattered the driver-side rear wheel.

The man was taken to the hospital at his request.

A few days later, my wife and I had to go the the wreck yard where the cars were taken after the accident so that I could get my personal things out of the car. At this point, I was still limping around and feeling the bruises on my chest and ribs, and we are driving a rental. As we are leaving, I see the gentleman who so ignorantly pulled out in front of me pull into the yard, apparently to get things from his car. He gets out of his newly purchased SUV, he strolls into the office, then saunters out to the Mercedes, none the worse for wear.

That's what happened - or didn't happen - to him. Consequences didn't happen to him.

... sorry... still a little bitter about the whole thing...

Quote:

Did you get cited at all in this? Around here a flashing yellow light means that you're to slow to 25mph and proceed with caution. Is it different in TX?

Well, here we are taught that you are to proceed through a flashing yellow with caution, but are not required to slow down. Also, I had no reasonable or legal reason to slow down, as several vehicles had just gone through the intersection. Now, I will say that the speed limit was only 55, but there were no witnesses that could attest to an excesive rate of speed on my part, probably because at 60, I was still going slower than the rest of the cars on 287. The 5 mile per hour difference would mean that instead of hitting the rear door on the car, I would probably have hit just behind the rear wheel. There still would have been an accident.

Oh, and there is a full-on, four way traffic light system at that intersection now(red, yellow, green and everything). It was put up about 3 months after my wreck. I have actually considered suing the city about it, but I have to let this go someday, and a lawsuit probably won't help me let it go...

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When I see lightning, you know it always brings me down... because it's free, and it's me who's lost and never found.

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Joined: Dec 20 2003
Posts: 234
I am so glad they finally put

I am so glad they finally put a light in at that intersection. Even with the light I still avoid it as I feel it is still dangerous.

I think it was my junior year that one of the students at my high school died after having an intersection there.

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