Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Ugh

So last night, I'm driving to work, minding my own business, staying in my lane, when this kid two lanes over decides to get on the northbound freeway entrance ramp. Problem is, we were east bound. He had to turn left. From the farthest right hand lane. Across 3 lanes. In front of me. While it was raining. And he was talking on his cell phone. The good news is, nobody was seriously hurt. I ache, and I hear he's sore too, but we'll all live to do it again, as my momma used to say. The bad news is, for the 2nd time in 11 months, the front end of my car is hosed because someone pulled out in front of me.

But how convenient is it that I could call 911 and say "yeah, I've been in an accident, and by the way, could you please let the boss know I'll be a little late?" And I don't know if it was because a police employee was involved, or they were just bored, but there ended up being 5 squad cars out there. FIVE!! 2 of them were two-man units! That's 7 cops for a two car relatively minor accident :P The thing was, none of them talked to me. They asked the witness what he saw, then they asked the other driver what happened, and he said "yeah, that's pretty much it. It was totally my fault." Then the officers told me to wait in my car for the information exchange sheet with report number on it (it was raining pretty good) and when I got that they sent me on my merry way.

Now the fun of getting my car fixed begins. The thing is, this kid is like weeks older than Sam my 18 year old. He immediately got out of his car to see if I was ok, and he apologized. He seemed like a genuinely good kid. His dad called me this morning. Asked if I would consider letting them pay for the damage to my car themselves and not going through the insurance company. They've got a friend who can fix it for me. Because 18 year olds already pay through the nose for insurance in Arizona, add an accident to that, and they may as well sign over their first born and right arm. The kids in college and can't afford more for insurance. Having an 18 year old, I totally understand. But you know what, I'm still paying for this car. It's still under factory warranty. I'm not sure I want someone's friend fixing it. The preliminary estimate is over $2000 but will likely end up being closer to $3000 because there's a lot that is not visible without taking the front end apart. Then there's the whole rental car issue... So I'm kind of torn. It's not that I want to cause trouble for this kid, or make life hard for him, but he kind of did that himself when he chose to cut across 3 lanes of traffic while talking on his cell phone.

UPDATE: I spoke to the dad again, and he agreed it would just be better for all concerned to go through the insurance company. At the scene we didn't see much damage to my car, but it was dark and we didn't lift the hood, so they were thinking maybe $1000 and no rental car. So I'm glad I don't have to make that decision.

5 comments:

Michelle said...

Thats a hard one, for sure. But, like you said, there is no garuntee about getting your car done by a friend. You might just have to play the bad role later on when things don't work out as nicely as this sounds.
They have 18 year olds pay out the nose for reasons like this. It is an expensive lesson to learn, but one that can make a difference none the less!

Rebekah said...

Wow, that is a difficult choice. But geez, having his friend fix it may come around to bite you in the butt. If your leaning toward his friend, have someone check him out for you. Is this guy a mechanic, ect...
Glad to hear your ok.... sorry about the car

aka_Meritt said...

I'm so glad you weren't hurt! I had a guy do similar to the car in front of me last week - and he rocked and almost hit the median and dust flew up and he came thiiiiiis close to flipping. UGH.

But! I'm SO GLAD to hear he was a good kid about it - saw if you were ok and whatnot. Kudos to him!

Now... the big decision about the car and insurance. Ugh. I understand both sides. If you don't want to go through insurance you could go get 2 estimates and give them to him and he could give you the cash to get it fixed yourself at a place YOU choose - but still not go through insurance.

Jessica said...

Wow, that is a hard one since your car in under warrenty. I think that I would make their insurance pay that way you know its going to be done right and so you get a rental car. He does need to learn a lesson if he was on his cell phone and driving like that too. I hope your not as sore now, feel better soon!

Grafted Branch @ Restoring the Years said...

Doesn't He just answer our prayers above what we can think to ask? He is so good and kind and completely in control for the benefit of His own.

3 lanes of traffic? Cell phone? Sometimes I think parents fail to impress upon their children that they are driving a lethal weapon and could kill other people...big people, old people, little helpless people. Grrrrrr....