Driving Safety Measures Can Save Lives In the Event of An Accident
Car accidents have an endless array of causes, from the predictable — such as intoxication, smart phone use, and poor road conditions — to the flat-out bizarre.
One example of the less conventional road disturbance occurred on I-25 near Pueblo, CO last November. Golf balls, of all things, were involved. Jason Aubrey, a reporter for KKTV, describes what happened:
Salinas was traveling south on I-25 around midnight. She was on her way to pick her boyfriend up from work when she was targeted, shattering what would have been a calm, pleasant night.
As Salinas was approaching the Highway 50 bypass, she noticed two or three young people on the western side of the highway. Salinas says, at first she thought they were trying to cross the highway, but as she turned her focus back to the road in front of her she saw two white objects flying at her windshield. ‘The next thing I know, I just hear this loud sound,’ says Salinas.
One of the two golf balls struck her windshield near its base, leaving behind circular cracks, the other bounced under her car and ricocheted around in her undercarriage. ‘I was terrified. I could hear the crackling of the windshield still breaking. I thought that it was going to crash on me; just completely break into pieces. I didn’t know what to do,’ says Salinas.
Not your run-of-the-mill occurrence, but certainly one where liability is obvious. Fortunately it did not result in an actual crash, just a damaged car and a very scared driver.
The real point here is safety. You can never tell what curve balls life is going to throw into your path, especially on the road. The best thing you can do is always be prepared. Basic defensive driving skills, wearing your seat belt, keeping your eye on the road are all simple practices that can help you avoid a car accident, or keep you and your passengers safe if an accident does occur.
Here’s another example. Last week, First Lt. Blair Ross of Schreiver Air Force Base’s 4th Space Operations Squadron was driving with his wife and son in their sedan, when an SUV pulled out in front of them. Ross’ wife, who was driving at the time, slammed on her brakes to avoid a collision but hit the SUV head on, despite her efforts. If reports are accurate, the collision occurred at roughly 60 miles per hour, a recipe for disaster.
Scott Prater, a reporter for the Schriever Sentinel, describes what happened next in this excerpt from his article on the Screiver Air Force Base Website:
The Ross’ sedan crushed like an accordion from front bumper to windshield. Thankfully, the baby was properly secured in a child-safety seat, their vehicle’s airbags deployed properly and all the passengers were wearing seat belts.
Schriever first responders were on scene within minutes of the first call. Despite extensive damage to their sedan, both the wife and her baby escaped the crash uninjured. Lieutenant Ross complained of back pain at the scene and the entire family was transported to Memorial Hospital for further physical evaluation. The driver of the SUV declined treatment from emergency personnel.
‘I’m thankful that everyone in Lieutenant Ross’s automobile were wearing their seat belts and their child was in an appropriate child seat,’ said 4th SOPS Commander Lt. Col. Douglas Schiess. ‘Their proper wear of seat belts more than likely saved their lives. That is one of the reasons we continually remind all Air Force members and family to wear their seat belts.’
Although the potential for injury or death in this accident was very high, taking the proper precautions kept everyone safe in this case. Play it safe when you and your family get into the car. In the case of an auto accident, don’t you want the deck stacked in your favor as much as possible?