Around 7:30 PM last Sunday, I was enjoying a quiet evening when a loud crash almost jolted me out of my chair. It was followed by a sickening scraping sound that lasted a good ten seconds.
I stood up and ran outside, looking up the street about 200 yards from my apartment to see what used to be an early 1990s Ford Mustang. The entire neighborhood, which was jolted into action just like I was, descended upon the scene, all of us expecting to see carnage. Thankfully, we didn't. At least, not in the human variety. The car was another story.
A kid who looked about eleven years old had been walking on the sidewalk with his dad, younger brother and baby sister, and told me that he'd witnessed the driver roll out the passenger side onto the street, then get up and walk over to a corner restaurant where he sat dazed and bleeding on a chair, half his left ear hanging off. The car had left a trail of debris and destruction. Completely taking out a traffic light box, which sheared off his passenger side door. He'd been traveling at around 80 miles per hour and not even applied his brakes, meaning he hadn't even seen the curb. That box could have been that family I was talking to, or anyone enjoying a summer evening walk. I resisted the urge to go over to the driver, who looked like an aging gangbanger with an impressive beer gut, and kick the reckless waste of flesh hard in the ribs. About at that point, another kid, a girl this time who looked about the same age as the boy, walked up to me and told me that driving while texting is the equivalent of driving and drinking. It was so cute, and clearly she was proud of herself for being able to recite back what she'd learned in a safety lesson at school.
This is what was left of the traffic light controller box, and part of the inside of his door that was halfway between the controller box and where the car came to a rest. Also there, before a fireman who had picked it up, was the driver's shirt.
In this photo, you can see how far the car skid. The corner is where the downed controller box is, as well as the outer passenger door. Past where the woman is pointing, about thirty more feet, is where the car finally stopped skidding.
In this photo, you can see where the driver hit his head and sliced his ear in half. I've highlighted the area where his blood is on the door.
If this isn't a message to be attentive while driving, I don't know what is. This guy is going to be in a world of hurt both financially and legally. And frankly, he deserves to be. So many people here drive recklessly. My first year in my apartment, there was a horrific accident. Luckily for me, it was mid summer and all my fans and air conditioner were on. I heard the squeal, but not the crash. I posted about that accident, and posted some of the photos I took of the aftermath. That car ended up in the Warner Bros. lawn. I also linked to an article that explains what happens, and that the driver was charged with murder, as he should have been.