Car Accidents Suck

Traffic control devices provide for the safe and orderly movement of traffic… unless idiots are not paying attention!

On Wednesday night I visited Dad in the care facility.  As I left, the traffic light down the street turned red.  While sitting, I noted that a cop had stopped at the other direction, also waiting for the light to change.  A split second later, I heard a loud screech and at nearly the same time, a car rammed my Dad’s little Chevy Cobalt from behind at 30+ miles per hour. 

The impact threw my broad shoulders over the sides of the small car seat and something in the back and / or neck popped.  The police responded instantly and I was taken to the hospital by ambulance on a backboard for an CT scan.  Thankfully, nothing is broken.

The last two days (Thursday and Friday) have been painful.  It wasn’t until visiting a chiropractor today that there was some relief.  I’ve been to different chiropractors but this guy was really good.  When he adjusted things, the neck cracked very loudly as did portions of the back.  He also did a tune-up on that funky rotator cuff and it’s doing the best it has in months!

Dad’s car is not in bad shape at all – just a damaged trunk lid and bumper.  The girl who hit me at nearly full speed might have been texting, according to the police.  Her Chevy Aveo suffered serious damage and it was bleeding anti-freeze (or green Vulcan blood?) all over the pavement.  (Good!)

Guess which company the other person had… They are being good to me so far!

The insurance adjuster assured me that Dad’s little car will be repaired.  The medical bills will be paid in full.  Now there is just the matter of a settlement for my discomfort and the associated problems.  The insurance guy quickly threw out a cash figure but I think it’s a bit too low.  We’ll see how it goes.  Of course, it wouldn’t hurt to have a little extra cash in the form of gas cards for the van trekking adventures!

Even with all the pain in my neck, on Thursday night I was called in and had to run a trip to the east end of Iowa, back to the other end (near Omaha) and then back to Cedar Rapids… It was a 600 mile expedition!  Tonight I’ve put in 200 miles and just got called in to do another 200 mile run.  There is never a dull moment as a crew shuttle driver.

I’m still liking the railroad crew shuttle job and it’s great to have decent money coming in.  The wrinkle is that I’m still in the probation period at work and not permitted to be involved in an accident.  Thankfully my boss went to bat for me and said she convinced my employer not to hold me responsible for getting rear ended.  There wasn’t a daggone thing that could have prevented it.  Unfortunately, my employer tends to assign blame to the employee first (even if it’s in his / her personal car) and ask questions later.  At least things are looking good.

If things settle down a bit, toward the beginning of the week the hope is to do a little camping and fishing, if time allows.  A little downtime would be a nice thing.  It’s been a heck of a week.

Gotta run for now and get the crew van back out on the road.  You’ll never find a happier professional van driver anywhere.  When people see my lunch pail and other trip accouterments, a few have said “It looks like you live in here.”  I’ve never said this to anyone but I sure would like to tell them “No, that would be the other van I drive!”

Take care.  Be careful out there.  There are a lot of stupid people texting on cell phones.  You don’t have to do a thing wrong to end up banged up.

Have a good weekend….

Brad the Van Trekker

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About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"

12 Responses to Car Accidents Suck

  1. Steven says:

    Oh man I’m glad it wasn’t more serious, and that you had the good fortune of having an Officer as witness to what happened. It does away with the he said/she said if the other driver attempts to lie about what took place.

    I’ve had the same happen to me when I lived in CA. The officer was behind me the lane over. The kid was arrested after a few minutes. Turns out he had no license, insurance, and a warrant out for his arrest due to his gang affiliation. No injuries and ins paid for it all due based on the police report.

    • Brad says:

      Thanks for the kind words. The other driver did give a conflicting story. She claimed to be unable to stop due to a bit of rain. The officer said she was driving too fast and it didn’t look like she attempted to stop or slow until just before impact. His words were golden. She’d still be on the hook anyway but he “set the hook” deeply. For as unfortunate as it was, I was blessed that he was there. 🙂

  2. Pat says:

    Glad you’re ok.

    • Brad says:

      Thanks Pat. I can see why companies try to settle quickly. The first day after wasn’t too bad. The second and third days have been pretty uncomfortable. Had I grabbed the first offer, I’d have a few bucks but would be miserable. I can only wonder… if I was 20 instead of 47, wouldn’t this heal up quicker? :-/

  3. Meg says:

    I would say, don’t settle anything with the insurance company about your medical bills just yet. Whiplash and other accidental trauma can take a while to show up. You’re right, they want to settle quickly to cap their costs. But you could end up losing out in the long run. Give it at least a couple of weeks if you can – maybe even longer. It *does* take longer to heal at 47 than at 20.

    (P.S. In case you’re wondering, I’m a former RN and also trained in massage therapy. My advice comes from experience with clients who’ve had accidents like yours.)

    • Brad says:

      Hi Meg, actually I already settled. Things have settled down quite a bit.. no more pain. Hopefully it will stay that way. The first four days were the worst. I’m happy how it came out – they were decent about it.

  4. Dragonfly says:

    I think you were wise to wait instead of taking their first offer. Glad it wasn’t the van.

  5. Pleinguy says:

    Sorry to hear about the accident, but glad you are doing OK. Keep an eye on that neck and back as those things can take a long time before you know if you’re really out of the woods. You seem to be in good spirits, which appears to be your MO. Live long and prosper.

    • Brad says:

      Thanks. So far so good… Yep, the spirits are pretty good. There’s a lot going on these days. I hope the neck and back thing are behind me for a while. Thanks for the kind wishes.

  6. JO says:

    WOW sure glad things went well with you. I know getting rear ended can cause lots of pain everywhere. Take care wishing you well.