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Cavalier Rear-Ended at 70 MPH
When I slammed on my brakes, my wheels locked up.
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Story: Cavalier Rear-Ended at 70 MPH
How I walked out of this with just bruises and my son unharmed, I don't know. On my way home from picking up my 4-year-old son at daycare, I got on the Pennsylvania Turnpike as I always do. I didn't even go 2 miles when I noticed a brown sedan put on its turn signal. (I was in the left lane doing 70 MPH, he was in the right lane.) He was going to hit me so I slammed on my brakes. When I slammed on my brakes, my wheels locked up. All I remember was trying to straighten my car out so I wouldn't hit the median. I remember looking at the guy (who did successfully pass me) keep on going into the distance. I panicked when I saw the concrete median again and hit my brakes once again. The next thing I know, I heard a huge crash and my car spun all the way onto the shoulder. My son started screaming and I was knocked out. (My son was checked later at the hospital and he did not have one scratch on him and was fine, I however, had bruises down the left side of my body and had to wear a neck brace.) When I came to, my car was half in the right lane, half on the shoulder. I saw a state trooper rushing towards me. I realized what was happening and stepped out of my car to get my son. He was crying as I scooped him up. I finally got the courage to look at my car; I knew it would be bad however I thought it would be fixable. (As you can see from the pics, the damage is quite severe.) This was a 2001 Chevy Cavalier, which I struggled to pay off early, and did that very same day of course. My car was totaled however. I found out the car was worth $3,030 since it had so many miles on it (104,000). I was devastated as I was faced with another car payment again that I couldn't afford. Thankfully the insurance adjuster cut me a check for $5,066. I found another car (used of course, a 2002 Cavalier) and had enough left over to buy a new computer.
The minivan that hit me (5 teenagers smoking pot) was tailgating me I later found out and had the driver kept a safe distance he would have never of hit me. I learned a few things from this disaster:
One Even though I loved my car to death and cried my eyes out when I found out it was totaled (the damage was estimated at $6,000 as the frame was bent) I realized that it is just a piece of metal that can be replaced, my life and my son's life cannot.
Two If my car was new and I didn't carry gap insurance I would have been screwed. I never thought a wreck like this could happen. Those of you with newer cars and are still carrying a hefty balance to pay off if you don't have gap insurance, get it now as you would only get the fair market value for your car and be out the rest of the money you still owe on it you will be paying for a car you no longer have.
Three DO NOT SLAM ON YOUR BRAKES IF YOU FEEL YOURSELF LOSING CONTROL OF THE CAR. This caused my car to fishtail all over the place. Thankfully I gained control and would have been fine if the car behind me wasn't on my ass.
Four Make sure if you have children, they are properly in their car seats. I did and my son was safe.
And lastly, Five DO NOT TAILGATE. Tailgating can cause you to rear-end someone, and what does it accomplish? (Rather than pissing off the driver in front of you and if they are the wrong person they can whip out a gun or purposely slam on their brakes and it would be your fault you hit them, PLUS it does not make the driver go faster.) If anything, if I see someone tailgating me, I continue at the speed I was traveling and if I do not feel safe, I signal to pull over and let them pass.
City: Monroeville, PA
Location: Pennsylvania Turnpike
Date&Time: August 22, 2005, 6:09 P.M.
My name: Nicky O'.
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