01:00 am - Well... that's that.
Hey, Bats? In the next two weeks, either I'll be able to help you with whatever you wanted to do to your car, or I'll be declaring bankruptcy.
For everyone else... the Civic is more-or-less totalled. Long story short, the roof is caved in nearly to the floor, though that is actually the only real damage. The doors still work, for example, and the engine compartment wasn't breached. If I hadn't crouched forward, I wouldn't be typing this entry right now, in fact.
The events, as I can recollect them:
I was travelling northbound at approximately 40-45mph (somewhere just over 40 on my speedometer) in the #3
lane of Brookhurst, approaching the Margo cross-street.
There was almost zero traffic anywhere ahead, the signal was clear almost to the next signal.
A black 'luxury' car (boxed-off trunk, very steeply sloped back window that met the trunk lid at a minimum of a 60-degree angle) made a U-turn at a yield-on-green light, directly into my lane.
I thought this was odd, as that kind of car should be able to easilly make a turn to the #2
Then I saw their brake lights flare to full brightness, when I was approximately double the length of the intersection back from the intersection. (Triple the intersection length from the car.)
I did not have enough distance to controlled-stop. And a panic-stop was likely to make me lose traction as I'd just gotten new brake pads and would most likely instantly lock the wheels, or glaze the pads and provide zero braking at all. This negated braking as a valid tactic.
Dodging to the right wasn't possible, there is a small 'center divider' there, then a line of parked cars on the side-street there.
I glanced to the left, saw no vehicles on my left, or in my rear-view mirror, so I slapped the turn-signal and slid left fairly casually.
I hear the sound of tires losing all traction, then a moment later that sound doubles in intensity and I know what happened instinctually, though it takes a while until I can consciously grasp it. A rear-wheel drive car was accelerating to overtake me in the #2
lane. When I dodged left, they tried to dodge left, fishtailed, then tried to correct AND slammed on their brakes. So they lost traction in two wheels, then all four wheels. Ergo the doubling of the noise.
Then I see said white car coming approximately 45-60 degrees angled towards my lane, but travelling at only 30-45 degrees momentum.
As they started to spin out, their front end P.I.T.ted me very neatly, leaving me spinning VERY quickly 270, and up onto two wheels for a moment, at which point I did my 'usual' duck-and-kill-the-engine move when I surrender myself to the fates.
I (obviously) lost track of the white car when I spun around and then ducked out of sight. I felt a very hard 'final' shock, and heard/felt the seat crushed behind me.
I had hit the curb on those two wheels, and that had bounced me up onto my side fully, nearly vaulting over had it not been for the front end of a Chevy pickup truck my roof nailed dead-middle. I ripped most of the front facade off said truck from the impact, and had I not ducked, every single Paramedic, Firemen, and Police Officer said I would have been dead instantly.
I bounced back, car landing on it's side on the ground.
I ended up having to more-or-less shove/shout the five or seven people that tried to 'help' me out of the car to back off, so I could figure a way out, since both windows had actually stayed intact, the doorframes mostly intact but the roof caved in nearly flush to the floor in the middle so I couldn't crawl out the back this time.
Thankfully, I carry a 5000lbs-limit shop jack in the back of my car. And I was able to reach around blindly and find it. I wedged it under the roof and doorframe, and more-or-less jaws-of-lifed myself to straighten the window. Then I had an amusing thought... and tried the window crank. It actually rolled right down, once I had the track straightened again. So I packed the jack away, found my boots, knocked the glass out, and climbed out of the car, much to the amazement of everyone in the peanut gallery that had formed. I actually got a small round of applause when I started to jack the car apart from the inside, and a good few chuckled when I rolled the window down from the two or three people close enough to see that part. =^.^=
So... my only injury is my left forearm has lots of pinprick scratches and nicks around the elbow from my climb out mostly. At least, as far as I know right now that's all.
And the reason this whole mess happened... as noted by the tow-truck operator when they were winching up the white car. "What the hell? There's no tread at all on these rear tires." Response from the cop: "Geez... some people try to wring every last mile out of their tires. The front's are much better."
Unfortunately, the other car was full of 16-18 year olds, all the 18's declined medical treatment, the under-18's had to get mandatory medical treatment.
And a streetlight got wrecked.
And that fell on a pickup truck (the same one I creamed the front end of) further obliterating the light and
Thankfully, there were others that saw the black car, but nobody got anything conclusive on it, and it's not a camera-equipped intersection. Someone thinks they saw a 'just sold' tag on the license-plate frame, which pretty much means they'll never know who caused this mess by being impatient, as they didn't wait but drove away. Likely because they realized they'd caused the accident by cutting in front of me.
So... yeah. I guess I'll be deleting the 'Civic' icon from my usericons shortly. I'll be heading over on Monday to check out the corpse more throughly, and make the decision of if it's salvage, or if it's fixable. Which means I'll see if the engine turns over, and diagonal-cross-measure the frame to see if it's within tolerances still. If it still runs well, and the frame isn't shattered beyond use... I'll still probably have to give it up. But if it doesn't turn over, or the frame is out of true according to the official workshop manuals, I'll feel... well, it'll be more like assisted suicide for someone in agony than the feeling I'm putting down the equivilant of a perfectly healthy greyhound just becuase they can't win races often enough.
Farewell, Shelly. I'm sorry I didn't have a chance to do you as proud as I'd hoped to.[EDIT:
And to explain the initial line on the message... if my recollection proves accurate, the accident is effectively a no-fault since the actual cause of it (the black car) got away completely. So I don't get handed the bill. Otherwise, it's more-or-less squarely on my shoulders, and the damages would likely land squarely on me since it's very easy for the lawsuits and so-forth this is sure to generate vastly exceeding any obtainable insurance anyone can get, since there was three minors involved so it's likely their parents will start being handed M60's loaded with hundreds of lawyers and start spray-and-praying until one sticks somewhere. Ergo, I'll either get off scott free, or end up screwed so hard I'll effectively never be able to earn an income as long as I live, and likely go to jail as a side-effect.]
P.S. And of course... this happens mere hours after I'd gotten off the phone getting a quote for the custom seats for my car... which was going to be started on later that day, and finished, installed, and payed for in approximately two weeks. Thankfully, they hadn't started on it yet, as I hadn't stopped by to make the initial down payment on the work.41 comments