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Old 04-26-2015, 03:38 AM   #1
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I Sort Of Saw A Bad Wreck...Please Be Careful In Fog

I was driving home on a two-lane road tonight (last night, now) and this road is very curvy with no passing lanes. It was about 11:50pm and it was very foggy, so I reduced my speed to between 30 and 35 mph on this 45 mph road. I couldn't see well because of the fog, and I'm normally a careful driver anyway.

A white SUV came flying out of nowhere around a curve and stayed on my bumper for a minute or two. He was following so closely his lights were all in my mirrors and I was a bit blinded as he was using his high beams. He also seemed very impatient, as he kept flashing his high beams at me. I may have slowed to less than 30 mph because between the fog and his lights, I couldn't see well. Then we came to a short straight part, and he shot around me and passed me as if I were sitting still. His lights disappeared so quickly I'd say he was going at least 50 mph.

A few seconds later, I saw what looked like headlights up over the road in front of me going from right to left, and shining up through the fog and sky. I was at one time an EMT and firefighter, and I was hit with the awful realization that the SUV had somehow flipped.

It did. It went off the road, struck down a power pole, and landed upside down in a ditch. The car was crushed. The power pole was broken in 3 places. I had my hand on my cell phone the second I saw the headlights arc over the road and I got to the accident in probably less than 30 seconds.

I pulled over in a parking lot, a lady coming toward us also pulled over, and I told her to see if anyone was conscious while I called 911. He was conscious, and saying he thought his shoulder was broken, and he was often screaming from pain. We talked to him, reassured him, and the lady found his Bible which had been thrown from the SUV along with a bunch of other stuff. We kept him alert until help arrived, and I squeezed into the SUV enough to turn the ignition key off.

He managed to crawl out, and the SUV was leaking gas as the rear end was pretty bad which is why I needed to turn the car off. The whole SUV was awful, to be honest. The fire department and cops and the ambulance came, and this nice deputy asked us if we saw anything. The other lady didn't, but I did. He told me to stay until the Highway Patrol got there. I did, I filled out a report and answered some questions.

He's going to be okay. The Highway Patrol officer was very young, but he was so sweet to me as I was a little shaken by this. I told him the truth and echoed that in my report that yes, I was going very slowly. As I was talking to him, it dawned on me that maybe because I was going slowly, I may have angered the SUV driver and so I may have contributed to the wreck. I felt terrible, but he assured me I was not at fault in any way. I still feel badly, but the driver did say he was reaching for his cell phone when he ran off the road and into the power pole.

The Highway Patrol officer told me he was driving too fast for conditions and was distracted by reaching his cell phone to make a call to his girlfriend. He's very lucky to be alive and I'm glad he'll be okay.

Please, please, never get impatient with that slow driver in front of you. And please don't speed. He was gunning the SUV and was going at least 50 mph when he passed me and disappeared so fast. And when it's foggy, please remember to slow down. Rear taillights and brake lights aren't all that visible in fog until you're close to them sometimes. And if you see a dangerous driver as I did, try to get a description of the vehicle and the direction on the road it's travelling, then pull off to a safe place and report it.

I'm probably preaching to the choir here, but this was so preventable, danggit.

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Old 04-26-2015, 04:01 AM   #2
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Please, please, never get impatient with that slow driver in front of you. And please don't speed. He was gunning the SUV and was going at least 50 mph when he passed me and disappeared so fast. And when it's foggy, please remember to slow down. Rear taillights and brake lights aren't all that visible in fog until you're close to them sometimes. And if you see a dangerous driver as I did, try to get a description of the vehicle and the direction on the road it's travelling, then pull off to a safe place and report it.

I'm probably preaching to the choir here, but this was so preventable, danggit.
Good advice, and it's not just night driving or inclement weather. Friday I was waiting at a traffic light on a clear day at 9:AM and a car rear ended me. The driver was using a smart phone and just looked away for a few seconds. Everyone was fine, but now we both have to go through the hoops with insurance companies, repair shops etc... What a waste of time and money for all concerned!
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Old 04-26-2015, 11:16 AM   #3
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I must irritate a lot of people in inclement weather. I will always slow down as conditions require it.
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Old 04-26-2015, 11:54 PM   #4
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Aunt Bea, I'm really glad no one was hurt. The insurance hassle is in itself a real pain in the tail, but it sure beats traction and surgery. Bleah!

Ogress, you keep on driving safely. Kudos!
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Old 04-27-2015, 02:41 AM   #5
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There are just too many people on the road who think "it won't happen to ME" when they do something stupid. I'm glad he'll be OK, but I'm afraid he won't learn. I'm especially glad that YOU are fine, CCL! You just keep driving responsibly and worry about yourself.

Sometimes you have to think accidents are just nature's way of thinning the herd.
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Old 04-27-2015, 08:54 PM   #6
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There are just too many people on the road who think "it won't happen to ME" when they do something stupid. I'm glad he'll be OK, but I'm afraid he won't learn. I'm especially glad that YOU are fine, CCL! You just keep driving responsibly and worry about yourself.

Sometimes you have to think accidents are just nature's way of thinning the herd.
Thanks! That's just what my hubby said LOL!
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Old 04-27-2015, 09:32 PM   #7
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Glad everyone's relatively OK, CCL and Aunt Bea!

Looks like cell phones were part of the cause of the accidents in both cases. People need to stay off their phones while driving, especially in bad weather! I'm not even sure I like those hands free phones - it's still a distraction.
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Old 04-27-2015, 10:23 PM   #8
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Glad everyone's relatively OK, CCL and Aunt Bea!

Looks like cell phones were part of the cause of the accidents in both cases. People need to stay off their phones while driving, especially in bad weather! I'm not even sure I like those hands free phones - it's still a distraction.
Yes, the hands free phones are a distraction. However, it turns out that talking to a boss or client is much more dangerous than talking to friends and family. People are more reluctant to say, "Wait, traffic" to bosses and clients than to friends and family.

I don't use my phone when I'm driving other than having the GPS function talk to me. I put on the passenger seat and just listen. Here in Quebec, they are making it more expensive and more points to get caught with a switched on cell phone in your hand if you are driving.
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Old 04-27-2015, 11:34 PM   #9
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Yes, the hands free phones are a distraction. However, it turns out that talking to a boss or client is much more dangerous than talking to friends and family. People are more reluctant to say, "Wait, traffic" to bosses and clients than to friends and family.

I don't use my phone when I'm driving other than having the GPS function talk to me. I put on the passenger seat and just listen. Here in Quebec, they are making it more expensive and more points to get caught with a switched on cell phone in your hand if you are driving.
In CA, if it even looks like someone is using a cell phone while driving, law enforcement can pull you over and they do strictly enforce that. The only exception is if a person is using their cell phone to call in an emergency. Anyone under 18 is banned from all cell phone use while driving, even hands free. Except in an emergency.

I'm in a small town that's only 3 miles from one end of town to the other and pull over to the side of the road if one of my daughters calls me, just to say 'I'm driving, I'll call ya back.' If I don't get back to them right away they keep calling.
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Old 04-28-2015, 04:44 AM   #10
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In CA, if it even looks like someone is using a cell phone while driving, law enforcement can pull you over and they do strictly enforce that. The only exception is if a person is using their cell phone to call in an emergency. Anyone under 18 is banned from all cell phone use while driving, even hands free. Except in an emergency.

I'm in a small town that's only 3 miles from one end of town to the other and pull over to the side of the road if one of my daughters calls me, just to say 'I'm driving, I'll call ya back.' If I don't get back to them right away they keep calling.
That's what my daughter does. Her phone is always at the very bottom of her purse. And being an employee of the RMV (upper management) if she gets caught using her cell, she could lose her job. And she has only to the end of July to go. Just not worth it. And like she says, she has yet to get an emergency call when she is driving. It is usually her daughter with something stupid. "Have you seen my headband?" If I call her and she doesn't answer by the third ring, I hang up. She will check her phone when she has a chance and call me back.
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