Close Call a Reminder to Drive Safely
– September 5, 2013 9:10 am
The sound of screeching tires. The smell of burning rubber. The sight of an oversized pick-up veering directly toward my car window.
None of these were things I wanted to experience during a slug ride last week.
There I sat in the front passenger’s seat while slugging home one afternoon, looking down at my phone, having a light-hearted conversation with my best friend over text messages. It had been a rough day for both of us at work, and we were joking to make each other feel better.
Little did I know at the time how much worse things could possibly become.
Suddenly, I heard the driver gasp, and felt the car jerk towards the left shoulder. As I looked up in surprise, I cringed, expecting to collide with the pick-up truck coming over from the right lane.
Luckily, we didn’t.
Thanks to the quick reaction of the driver, we narrowly avoided the accident by the skin of our teeth. She blew the horn at the reckless driver of the truck, who seemed completely oblivious to his wrongdoing.
“He wouldn’t have even stopped if he did hit us!” exclaimed the driver, obviously shaken up and trying to regain her bearings.
I shook my head in agreement, unable to form a response. The driver continued down the HOV lanes silently for the next few minutes, steering clear of the careless driver. We were both somewhat in shock.
“That was close,” she finally mumbled.
As glad I was to have made it through the ride unscathed, it was a terrible feeling that I had in the pit of my stomach.
What if we had gotten into an accident that day? What if the driver hadn’t noticed the truck coming into our lane in time? What if….
I had to stop thinking about what could have happened – instead, I was thankful that it hadn’t. The slug driver was kind enough to drop me off right at my car, with a reminder to get home safely.
“You, too!” I replied, thanking her again.
Of course, accidents happen. They can happen to anyone at any time, as a passenger or as a driver, whether you or someone else is at fault. I’d like to think that all slug drivers, or drivers in general, will exercise caution while on the road, but of course that’s never guaranteed.
So, here’s a Public Service Announcement for all of my fellow commuters and drivers this week: Drive carefully! Remember, it’s not only your safety at stake, but also the safety of your passengers and thousands of other drivers on the Northern Virginia roadways.