Tuesday, June 8, 2010

What are the odds?

I've driven like a maniac most of my life. I've mellowed some over the last few years, but I bet on the highway, fewer than 10% of vehicles go faster than I do. I consider myself pretty lucky to get pulled over for speeding only once every year or two. I've managed to stay accident free too. The worst thing that happened to me in 32 years of driving was when a deer ran into the side of my mother's brand new minivan at night a few years ago in Michigan. The deer lept over a huge ditch on a two-lane highway and hit the passenger door where my mother was sitting with such force that all of us messed our pants. The deer amazingly was able to run off. Unfortunately my mom's van had a bit of crinkle damage to the side panels. Have any idea where this is going yet?

Up until a month ago, I could boast I hadn't broken a bone in my nearly 48 year lifespan. Then I had to go ahead and break two bones in three places. And to do it really right, I made sure titanium hardware was needed to pull the pieces back into place again.

So in a span of a month, I destroyed my broken bone free and accident free life. Sunday, my first solo drive in a month, still in a cast, I set out to get a Starbucks coffee. I took a more back roads way, as I had all the time in the world. I slowed to make a left turn just over the border in Mass, and wham, my wife's tiny Scion xD catapulted ahead about 10ft. Glad I didn't have the wheels turned a little, else I would have went into the oncoming car.

I went ape-shit. It was a car full of teenagers with a girl driving. I called the police and hesitated to even get out to assess the damage. I was fine.  I could see her full size car's hood was buckled up and bumper caved in. My xD probably weighed half as much. I was hugely surprised to find largely cosmetic rubber bumper damage. I'm sure some metal behind there is all bent up, but the hatchback was still perfectly aligned, no rear lights damage, and no misalignment of any other body panels. It was a huge impact. I think Toyota designed this bumper right.

I could go into some hilarious details of what transpired next, but not in this open forum. They do have my full contact info. Needless to say, I was zero percent at fault. I was never questioned about hobbling around on crutches in a cast either. I do not feel the least bit handicapped driving now, and I guess the officer didn't think I was either. Now had I done the rear ending, maybe things would have been viewed a little differently.

Cathy didn't believe me at first when I told her I got in an accident. Then she freaked. Then after she checked it out, she just kind of shrugged it off. I'm contemplating whether it is worth replacing the bumper on the xD or not. The car is only 2yrs old. I don't think it is worth the hassle and risk of my insurance premium going up.  I was so paranoid driving that morning. Look what happened. Some have said it is no coincidence. Now I'm even more paranoid, like everybody out on the road is out to get me.

On a more positive note, I'm beginning to get more and more out of the SkiErg workouts. I can still only go 30-40 minutes on the machine, but my triceps are starting to hold up better. I also learned I can do one-legged standing poling. This nets about a 50% increase in power output and gives my good leg one mean workout. I can sustain one-legged poling for only 2-3 minutes, and if I do 3-4 of these in one session, I feel like I get something close to a Chestnut Hill TT equivalent out of the workout. Hopefully in a couple weeks I can begin limited weight bearing on my left leg and see another jump in power output. I think the raw strength in my right leg has actually increased in the last month, and my ability to balance or hop one-footed without loosing my balance has dramatically increased. I would not have been able to do one-legged poling before I broke my ankle.


CB2 said...

Yikes! I hope I don't keep following your lead.
I'm assuming the young lady had insurance? If so, your premium won't go up; I've been rear-ended a couple of times @ work and there has been no change in my policy. When my truck was only a year old my wife even hit a pole in a parking lot and it didn't change my policy (it was the only claim against my policy).

Anonymous said...

And was this girl Texting?

rick is! said...

is NH a no fault state? her insurance should pay for it.

gewilli said...

Rear ending like that will result in no change in your policy and generally no deductible.

If you don't fix it or at least have it inspected and certified that it is structurally sound back there then the next hit might result in far more significant damage (total the car). And because there was previous damage to the vehicle that went unfixed they may argue and not pay.

Get it fixed.

When I got rear ended in CT it only looked like a minor bumper issue. But I took the bumper off and found the shocks collapsed and the bumper frame bend very significantly. The plastic didn't look so bad but under neath was a whole different story.

Hill Junkie said...

My primary concern here is that generally, when an accident has occurred and your insurance company gets involved, it can trigger a driving record check regardless who is at fault. Maybe this was just Michigan that had no-fault. I don't know. I have recent speeding tickets that haven't made an impact on my premium. I surmise it is because my insurance company hasn't had a reason to pull my file. I fear that a repair that might not cost me anything now could cost me thousands over the next several years.

I will call my local insurance agent to ask a couple "hypothetical" questions to see what the risk is. If there is zero chance of record check, I'll get it fixed.