Friday, December 12, 2008

December Challenge Day 12

My reality, what I saw:
This morning I had to stop on the way to work to fill up my Jeep. I was at the intersection of Woodrow & Koenig. I was distracted, briefly, by my phone when I heard a very loud crash followed by the squeal of tires. I looked up from my vantage point to see a black Chevy Blazer speeding away from a white Honda the driver had just annihilated in the intersection. I watched for a few seconds to notice A) the driver’s side front wheel of the Blazer had bent in slightly and knew the driver wasn’t going to get very far. The Blazer was speeding down Koenig and appeared to be trying to get control of the vehicle. Smoke was coming from the tires. The next intersection up, Grover & Lamar, the stop light was red and there was a line of cars stopped at the light. It appeared the driver of the Blazer was going to disregard the stop light to get away from the scene and swerved into the oncoming lane of traffic. I lost sight of the Blazer from that moment on.

I was concerned about the two people in the white Honda, but I could see them both moving in the car, shaken, but moving. I wanted to avoid what was surely going to be a traffic nightmare, so I drove off, back into the neighborhood to circle around. I was also planning on driving up Koenig, which I never do, to see if I could spot the Blazer. As I said, with the driver side front wheel being bent as it was, I knew it wouldn’t get very far. I also knew that given the reckless manner in which it was driving, there was a strong possibility that it would have hit another car further up the road.

I went one block into the neighborhood and took the first right. Went up to the next street, Grover, and took another right. To my surprise, I saw the disabled black Blazer sitting up on the side walk. I called 911 to report that I had just witnessed a “hit and run” and that I was parked on the street behind the car that had done the hitting and running. At that point, I could already hear the sirens of the hotties at Battalion #5 coming to render aid.

When the police officer came up he asked me for my information and my version of what I saw, and I told him. That from MY perspective it appeared that the Blazer had smashed into the Honda and swerved around it to proceed up Koenig and then appeared to be avoiding the next stop light by swerving into the oncoming lane of traffic. It was clear as day, anyone could see the skid marks on the road and come to a similar conclusion.

The driver of the black Blazer was a Hispanic woman. And she was clearly shaken as well. She was very tearful. She didn’t appear to look like someone who would completely wipe out a car and just flee. Since my Spanish is horrible, I couldn’t understand what she was saying, but she was talking to one of the EMT’s and was very animated and pointing in various directions. Another fella had stopped at the same intersection, as he had seen where she became disabled from his perspective. He said it didn’t appear that she had any control of the car. He said that when she spun around in the intersection and her car flipped up on the sidewalk he noticed her back tires were still spinning.

HER reality:
The EMT came up to me and asked me if it looked like she was trying to get away from the accident and at that point I wasn’t sure anymore. I told him that from MY perspective it certainly looked like someone was trying to flee. He told me the woman’s gas pedal was stuck and that the swerve lines were most likely because she had her foot on the brake and was trying to stop, but the wheels were still spinning out of control because of the pedal being stuck.
…and at that moment I felt a slight twinge of guilt for being a “witness to the scene” and having already pre-judged what had happened.

That’s all I got. Have a good weekend.


Kay said...

Hmmm. Wonder what really happened?