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This Crash: Pic 2 (restored)
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From Maybe this will make us better drivers.
Here’s the story: I has gone to the tire store to purchase two new tires. I asked the service tech to put the tires “on the front.” He said, “Maybe you want them on the back, that’s where people tend to lose traction.” I said, “No, I want the tires on the drive wheels (front).” He said “Okay,” and an hour later off I went. Shortly thereafter, on a rainy night in Portland, Oregon I was on a freeway interchange driving ever so slightly beyond the conditions. In the middle of a long wide turn I felt the back of the car begin to slip and it put my car into a skid. There were other cars around me and I worried I would slide into them. I turned the front wheels in the direction of the skid and ALMOST recovered. But, alas, I over-corrected and slammed nose first into the guard rails and bounced back spinning 360 degrees across both lanes of the interchange, somehow managing to miss two cars (by pure luck) and came to rest on the shoulder facing the right direction. After about 15 minutes I determined the car was still (unbelievably) drivable and I drove about 15 miles home using side streets (I had no headlights). The next morning in full daylight I could see the damage. (Pic 1) No airbag deployed (model was before they were mandatory). Since I had this car since 1986 I decided I would work on it to fix it. Through some parts suppliers I know and body shops that were up to the challenge, I had the car restored and in May 2005 took it back to the streets. (Pic 2) It sounds stupid to restore a car that had almost 300K miles on it, but it has served me well for 21 years. I knew what it had inside, and it deserved another shot. I am almost paranoid on freeway curves these days. I am thankful I didn’t hit anyone else and ruin their day. Believe me, in curves I make sure I am nowhere near anyone who could lose it and take me out and ruin mine (again). A reminder about defensive driving. Enjoyed your site.
Car: Saab 900
Date: Dec 2004
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