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Old 03-13-09, 09:56 PM   #1
Doohickie 
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Son's first car wreck :(

So I was just fixing to leave work when the phone rang. It was my son- he said he was in an accident. Being that it's been rainy, I had driven to work today, so I drove over to where he was.

On a wet 4-lane road (2 each direction), a line of three cars was passing a school bus that was slowing down. Well, not only did it slow down, it stopped and the little stop sign popped out. My son was the last of the three cars. His Mercury Tracer (like an Escort) hit the rear of an SUV and the hood slipped under the SUV's bumper. That SUV slid/rolled/was pushed by my son's car slightly into the one at the front of the line that had stopped for the school bus.

Totally my son's fault; I think he thought the bus was just turning and didn't realize it was going to stop and put its stop sign out.

Anyway, the damages are: The front SUV had a little blemish on it's rear-mounted spare tire. I think that was it (unless there was damage behind the tire). The SUV behind him had a very minor dent on the hood from where it contacted the spare on the other SUV. Where my son hit the SUV, the rear bumper fascia was scratched and torn up a little, and the tailpipe was pushed forward (so that when the motor was on, it made a terrible clanking noise) but other than that I think it was fine.

My son's car was the worst- the hood folded in half and the radiator was pushed back to the engine. It looks repairable, so I had it towed to my house (paid for the tow, then my wife asked why I didn't call the cell-phone roadside assist to get a free tow... duh.)

The result:





I've already taken the headlights off and pulled the radiator support back; I need daylight to get under the car and disconnect some more stuff before pulling the radiator out.

Happy Friday the 13th!
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 03-13-09, 10:07 PM   #2
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Hey, Friday the 13th is lucky for you if you look at it from the proper perspective.......

Your son could have been hurt, instead of just property damage. It was a cheap lesson.
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Old 03-13-09, 10:14 PM   #3
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yikes! glad he's ok.
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Old 03-13-09, 10:20 PM   #4
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Happy that all involved were okay....

You should be able to get reimbursed for the towing?
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Old 03-13-09, 10:21 PM   #5
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It's only a car. An insured car. I'm glad there were no injuries.

I remember the first car I wrecked. I was racing my buddy down Main St, we were both in our parents' cars. I went to pass, and he hung a left. The next morning, my father informed me that I just bought my first car.
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Old 03-13-09, 10:33 PM   #6
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The clone and I wrecked into each other for our first car(s) wreck.
He ran into my back end sliding in gravel.


Glad your boy is OK.
Everyone has to pop that cherry sooner or later, and all in all that's not too badly damaged.
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Old 03-13-09, 10:48 PM   #7
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It's only a car. An insured car.
Actually, yeah, there was liability coverage, but no collision on his car. This was by design; it would have been an extra $130 a month or something stupid like that. This will probably be a $500 repair, or four months worth of collision coverage. Seeing as how he's been driving since August, I think I'm ahead.
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Old 03-13-09, 10:52 PM   #8
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Ahh, sorry to hear about the mishap. Like someone said, at least he's OK and it's a good lesson about thinking ahead and maintaining a safe buffer in front of you.

On the bright side, there won't be another Friday the 13th until November.
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Old 03-14-09, 04:04 AM   #9
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Glad your son is okay...

His car is totaled, however...
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Old 03-14-09, 06:05 AM   #10
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Nah. The radiator support was just pushed back into the engine. I've already pulled it back out. I just need to get me a new radiator and drop it in and make sure the car still runs okay. Assuming yes, the rest is pretty much cosmetic/bolt on parts.
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Old 03-14-09, 07:19 AM   #11
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are you sure the frame's still okay?
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Old 03-14-09, 07:40 AM   #12
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Good to hear your son came out of it OK.

After the rebuild, I see a couple stickers on the windshield, does your state have a mechanical safety inspection law?
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Old 03-14-09, 07:56 AM   #13
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are you sure the frame's still okay?
The whole impact was absorbed by the radiator support. The bumper in front of it, as well as the main frame structure, were untouched. As long as I can straighten the radiator support well enough to hold the radiator, it should be fine. I also own an Escort that my older son drives; that one's been wrecked worse than this... more than once in fact.
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Old 03-14-09, 08:00 AM   #14
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After the rebuild, I see a couple stickers on the windshield, does your state have a mechanical safety inspection law?
Since he didn't have collision insurance, it didn't get totaled out. As long as I get the headlights fixed by the next inspection, it'll be fine.

My other Escort was actually totaled out and now has a salvaged title. To get it re-registered at that time, I had to get a new inspection sticker and had to fill out a form that said what parts were replaced; that was all.
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Old 03-14-09, 08:07 AM   #15
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Glad that the boy is unhurt on the out side, what about inside his head. make sure that's OK too.

I'm waiting for that call my self, my son's been driving a little over 6 months. We have him check in when he get where he is going, and when he leaves to come home. I don't which is worse, knowing when he is on the road, or not knowing. He came home the other night and was shaking. WTF? It seem a local cop pulled him over for driving too close to the double yellow lines. He handled it well, and the cop didn't give him a hard time or a ticket. At least the first time for that turned out well.

BTW, hoods are designed to fold like that on impact, even a lesser hit will fold it up. My wife did it to our mini-van.
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Old 03-14-09, 07:41 PM   #16
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I a bunch of stuff off the car and got the radiator out today.





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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 03-14-09, 07:51 PM   #17
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Think of this as a great opportunity for you and your son to work on a car together... a little bonding. I wrecked my car the night before High School Graduation, no other cars involved. I called my dad and he had to pick me up at my friend's and drive me back to my car. There were cops everywhere; they thought it was a hit and run since I left. My car was totaled but there was no damage to anything else. My dad was great about it and supported me the entire time the cop gave me a lecture. That was almost 20 years ago and my dad and I are still very close. I am a better man today because of my dad.
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Old 03-14-09, 08:00 PM   #18
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Nah. Ain't happenin'.

He's getting ready to leave in the morning for a Spring Break service trip. By the time he gets back I hope it will be running.
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Old 03-14-09, 08:40 PM   #19
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Doohickie,has he appoligized to his mother for all the grief that went through her mind when you or him told her that he had been in an accident.
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