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Author Topic: Stay Alert Out There  (Read 954 times)

H5-Phil

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Stay Alert Out There
« on: May 17, 2019, 05:35:14 AM »
We were recently cruising across Florida towards Georgia minding our own business when...  A young lady zipping along in her Honda Accord decided to try and weave between the rear of a semi truck (in the #2 lane) and the front of my truck (#3 lane).  She misjudged by just enough to make contact with the driver's side front bumper of my F-350.

It all happened SO fast.  My first indication that my leisurely drive was about to change was when her vehicle contacted my truck and simultaneously started to wrap around the front of it!  I tapped the breaks hard and to my great surprise and pleasure, she fishtailed away instead of going broadside on my front bumper. 

This is my first accident while towing our 31' TT.  I think what helped keep this accident minor (besides my luck) was that I've always told myself that the trailer follows the truck, so I dive the truck and figure the trailer will take care of itself.  I'm of the opinion that while towing, swerving hard while braking hard is a recipe for disaster.  I was prepared to push this Honda broadside down the road if I had to.

So, I'm posting here not only as a reminder to stay alert out there, but to also find out if my towing strategy is flawed.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2019, 07:40:35 PM by H5-Phil »
Phil & Karen with Crash, our 'guard' Dachshund
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Rene T

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2019, 05:47:00 AM »
Boy that could have turned out allot worst than what it did. She and you we're very lucky. Was she on her phone? You may never know.
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H5-Phil

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2019, 06:45:00 AM »
Boy that could have turned out allot worst than what it did. She and you we're very lucky. Was she on her phone? You may never know.

Yes, lucky indeed, so many ways this could have gone very wrong.  Coincidentally, the Trooper that responded told me a witness to the accident had called to report it.  So, there is a chance the accident report may indicate whether or not she was on the phone.
Phil & Karen with Crash, our 'guard' Dachshund
KE6HUL / KE6NYJ
2014 F-350 Diesel XLT. with Leer shell
2004 31' Alumascape TT

Kirk

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2019, 06:59:52 AM »
Too bad that the person who witnessed and reported the incident didn't stop.
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Gizmo100

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2019, 07:14:59 AM »
You have to stay on your toes...Folks are on vacation and they just don't pay attention.

We are be spending a few weeks in FL. and the number of stupid drivers has exceeded my limit for the month.

Good job keeping your truck under control.
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Isaac-1

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2019, 07:32:24 AM »
You really do have to pay attention out there, it seems drivers are getting worse every year.  I was just mentally going over the accidents I have experienced in my live either as a driver or a passenger and on average they seem to be getting more frequent, as well as more clearly faults of the other driver.  The last 2 major accidents I have experienced (16 months ago, and 11 years ago), have both involved people running red lights that had been red for many seconds, both accidents happened in a 35 mph zone on a 4 lane highway in town near my house.  This does not count the guy that backed into me at a traffic light by my house 2 years ago (he felt he had pulled too far forward at the light so put it in reverse and crunch), or the guy that tapped my wife's rear bumper 1 block in the other direction from the house 2 weeks ago not paying attention when traffic came to a stop just after it had started forward when the light turned green.

Worse yet both the people that ran the lights and hit us both claimed they had the right of way, thankfully witnesses stopped in both cases and agreed with our version of events.  It is getting to where I approach every green light with caution.
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John From Detroit

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2019, 08:02:11 AM »
My brother has a story like that only the ending was a bit more mangled. Nobody got hurt but he was not driving a pickup pulling an RV type trailer. He was driving a Kenworth pulling a flat bed with a load of steel,,, total about 150,000 pounds... They stuck him in a Peterbilt while his KW was being rebuilt and he dang near went broke paying for fuel (The KW had a Detroit Diesel in it, the one that sipped fuel instead of guzzling like most trucks do).

I've had some darn near like that.... Very scary...  NOTE: This is one of the arguments in favor of having a dash cam.. Often the other guy will argue all about how it's your fault... I've seen that in person (Though it was my daughter).. She told her story (The truth) The skid marks and damage to the vehcile were easily read by both me and the investigating officer (Same story as my daughter) and the other guy tried to tell the officer how it was all her fault.. ... He wrote it up.. the way my darling truth telling daughter told it cause like I said. the PHYSICAL evidence told the same story.

Don't always get that lucky.

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rbrdriver

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2019, 08:11:57 AM »
Just think what could have happened if you had way too much trailer for your truck. This is why a lot of us come out of the woodwork to explain why it is necessary to have the proper tool for the job. We are so glad you did.  :)
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Irover

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2019, 08:16:47 AM »
 :o And driving for the other guy gets worse every minute of the day as new drivers take to the highways! It is no longer just driving for ourselves! Red Light  and stop sign runners. Speeders, Texting and phone use without blue tooth connections is the worst.  ::)

You must of had some extra driving skills to avoid it being a catastrophy!
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catblaster

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2019, 08:28:17 AM »
  It looks like those of us in Floriduh are getting an anti-texting law today when our governor sings it in. It makes texting while driving a primary offense. Drivers can still use GPS and dont have to hand over their phone to the popo.
   It's about time but still going to be problem, cellphones are too deeply rooted in our society for most to do without them even for a short trip.Besides, you cant legislate common sense.
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Cooperhawk

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2019, 09:04:18 AM »
Minnesota is about to adopt the no hands cell phone law shortly.  I can't say I am opposed to it. I have seen way too many folks with the phone to their ear, and worse yet looking down to text.  I use blue tooth in the car, but in the RV I simply will not answer the phone. I let the DW do that for me.  {Hope my girl friend never call!}.  {No, I don't have one.  One female is enough trouble}.
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wackymac

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2019, 09:12:46 AM »
  It looks like those of us in Floriduh are getting an anti-texting law today when our governor sings it in. It makes texting while driving a primary offense. Drivers can still use GPS and dont have to hand over their phone to the popo.
   It's about time but still going to be problem, cellphones are too deeply rooted in our society for most to do without them even for a short trip.Besides, you cant legislate common sense.
Great law but how will it be enforced?  It will be about like the law that says you can't drive without a license or insurance.
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SpencerPJ

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2019, 09:19:41 AM »
Great law but how will it be enforced?  It will be about like the law that says you can't drive without a license or insurance.

I agree.  I wish the whole country had a 'Hands Free' law.  NOBODY driving should have a phone in their hands, ever.

To the OP, great job.  I bet a change of underwear was in order  ;) :D :D :D

martin2340

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2019, 10:04:43 AM »
My theory is if it is my A** or yours you can kiss yours goodbye unless it is my fault then I do whatever possible to minimize any damage. Like Phil said " He would have pushed her sideways on the roof" if need be to protect himself and family.
Joe
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Lou Schneider

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #14 on: May 17, 2019, 10:55:04 AM »
I blame the video game culture for the growing number of aggressive (stupid) drivers on the road.  If you spend your formative years playing adrenaline rush road racing or combat games those attitudes are almost certainly going to affect your real life.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2019, 10:56:49 AM by Lou Schneider »

Rene T

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #15 on: May 17, 2019, 11:21:20 AM »
  It looks like those of us in Floriduh are getting an anti-texting law today when our governor sings it in. It makes texting while driving a primary offense. Drivers can still use GPS and dont have to hand over their phone to the popo.
   It's about time but still going to be problem, cellphones are too deeply rooted in our society for most to do without them even for a short trip.Besides, you cant legislate common sense.

It's been a long time coming. My question is how are they going to enforce it when you see the majority of the side windows are tinted so black that you can't tell if it's a man or woman driving.

Will, is it against the law in FL to have the drivers/passengers window tinted?  I heard it was but I even see the police have theirs tinted.
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catblaster

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #16 on: May 17, 2019, 01:39:55 PM »
My understanding is the side windows, including the driver side can be tinted but the limit is limited to its darkness.....no one listens to the law......copied from google;
   Window tint darkness in Florida. Windshield: Non-reflective tint is allowed above the manufacturer's AS-1 line. Front Side windows: Must allow more than 28% of light in. Back Side windows: Must allow more than 15% of light in. Rear Window: Must allow more than 15% of light in.
Will and Jane
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Joezeppy

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #17 on: May 17, 2019, 02:11:16 PM »
Glad everyone is ok...and glad it did not ruin your plans! We got in a small fender bender on the 1st day of our 2-week trip from NY to Myrtle Beach back in 2011. Similar to yours, it was someone trying to merge too soon - luckily it ended only with a couple of scrapes on my fender (buffed out when we got home) and the car losing her right side mirror. She was yelling at me and accused me of "racing her" (some race - 16,000 lbs vs. 3,000) and "threatened" to call the cops. When I pulled out my phone and told her I'd call for her, she changed her tune. We exchanged info, I called her insurance agent when we got to camp that night, and never heard back from them. I guess they took my side.  ;D
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John From Detroit

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #18 on: May 17, 2019, 05:30:25 PM »
Some of these no hands cell phone laws concern me because I'm not using a cell phone (At least not as a phone) when driving. Oh it may be mY GPS or my car radio (WTWW.US  Listen  TRANSMITTER 2) and of course it is the internet interface for another device I don't even touch or look at (It is behind the seat when I drive) but the Icom ID-51 2-way Radio I have a FEDERAL LICENSE to use (Requried) is not a phone. but it can be cordless.

Now the ID-5100 (which is another Icom radio I'm licenesed to use) has a corded microphonethat does not look like a cell phone.

But I worry smokey may not understandthe difference.

Oh well Fix that wed. Get the hand mic for the ID-51
Nothing adds excitement like something that is none of your business
My Home is where I park it.

Roy M

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #19 on: May 17, 2019, 07:31:58 PM »
Enforcement has been haphazard at best, the police don't know what is legal and what isn't. One driver got ticketed because he was wearing the earbuds with the phone laying on the seat beside him, the battery was dead but that didn't matter to the LEO. Apparently I can use the phone as long as it is fixed to the dash but I'm not going to push my luck.

Old_Crow

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #20 on: May 18, 2019, 06:23:56 AM »
I blame the video game culture for the growing number of aggressive (stupid) drivers on the road.  If you spend your formative years playing adrenaline rush road racing or combat games those attitudes are almost certainly going to affect your real life.

I'm with you on this Lou.  I've also said that I believe that those combat games are to blame for the rise in mass shootings by young people.  Play enough of those "blast 'em all" games and they loose touch with what it really means to pull a trigger or side swipe a car off the road.
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Old_Crow

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #21 on: May 18, 2019, 06:29:24 AM »
Some of these no hands cell phone laws concern me because I'm not using a cell phone (At least not as a phone) when driving. Oh it may be mY GPS or my car radio (WTWW.US  Listen  TRANSMITTER 2) and of course it is the internet interface for another device I don't even touch or look at (It is behind the seat when I drive) but the Icom ID-51 2-way Radio I have a FEDERAL LICENSE to use (Requried) is not a phone. but it can be cordless.

Now the ID-5100 (which is another Icom radio I'm licenesed to use) has a corded microphonethat does not look like a cell phone.

But I worry smokey may not understandthe difference.

Oh well Fix that wed. Get the hand mic for the ID-51


It's call distracted driving John, and it can be a cell phone, a Big Mac, or some fancy 2 way radio.  There really isn't any difference.
It irritates the crap out of my wife that I'll go through a drive-through to get my lunch and then sit in the parking lot and eat it.  I finally started parking and going into most restaurants.  If there's too many kids running wild, we'll get our order to go and go back and sit in the car to eat.   
Wally Crow
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"Well, my time of not taking you seriously is coming to a middle."

H5-Phil

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #22 on: May 18, 2019, 06:31:15 AM »
Thanks for the comments, tips and concerns.  We're in the Smokies now enjoying the great outdoors...

I wanted to add that calling 911 should be one of the first things you or your copilot does, even in a minor accident like ours.  Like Joezeppy alluded to, if given the opportunity the at-fault driver will twist the story in their favor.  Having a Trooper show up will give you and the accident scene a chance to tell the true story.

And last but not least, Florida State Trooper, Brett Pittman could not have been nicer.  Big strapping young guy with a great attitude and sense of humor.

Phil & Karen
Phil & Karen with Crash, our 'guard' Dachshund
KE6HUL / KE6NYJ
2014 F-350 Diesel XLT. with Leer shell
2004 31' Alumascape TT

H5-Phil

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #23 on: May 29, 2019, 08:02:53 PM »
Attached is the comment from the eyewitness of our near-serious accident...much thanks to the eyewitness for calling the Florida State Troopers. 
« Last Edit: May 29, 2019, 08:08:07 PM by H5-Phil »
Phil & Karen with Crash, our 'guard' Dachshund
KE6HUL / KE6NYJ
2014 F-350 Diesel XLT. with Leer shell
2004 31' Alumascape TT

Cooperhawk

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #24 on: June 08, 2019, 03:37:48 PM »
When I was a young man I drove tractor trailer for eight years.  One rainy night I was running with two friends on a four lane highway in central Minnesota.  I was number three in a three truck convoy, although we were space probably a hundred yards apart.  It was one in the morning when two young women passed me in the rain and pulled in behind the truck in  front of me.  Then they pulled out and passed him pulling in in front of him.  I didn't actually see what happened next, but learned later that they pulled out and passed the lead semi but when they pulled back in they caught his left bumper turning the car sideways and both trucks in front of me ran over the car.  I got stopped.

They both died.  Their car was crushed down to truck bumper level.  I could never figure out why on a four lane highway they kept pulling out to pass and then pulling back in line.  They could have just stayed in the left lane.

They were two young school teachers who had been playing Bingo in a nearby town on their way home.

We used to see a lot of accidents in those days, back in the sixties, but due to better highways not so many these days. 

Something like that really sobers you up.  No, no, I don't mean from drinking.
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Doc Roads

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #25 on: June 09, 2019, 11:37:17 AM »
I have a dash cam set up in my class A RV.  It simply sits up there and watches the road and traffic.  It may be able to record the use of cell phone.  I can download 3 minute segments to my laptop.  The dash cam is made by Cobra.  I have some wild and crazy shots of people racing to get past the RV before a construction lane and the weaving driver trying to split the diff between vehicle in one lane to another ... as for the OP, but for the Grace of God, each one of us could have been you. 
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sandpsycho

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Re: Stay Alert Out There
« Reply #26 on: June 12, 2019, 09:33:54 AM »
My state has had a "hands free law" for over 10 years. It does nothing to stop people. 60-70% of people driving have a phone in thier hand and are texting or talking away. It's also very hard to enforce when your looking for something that fits in a persons hand while driving a full size, black and white car, with a red and blue light bar and reflective stickers that say SHERIFF.

You just have to watch out for the idiots because they are not watching anything. Also about 90% of people that cause a crash will lie and say the other person caused it.
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