My wife graduated with her Masters degree two weeks ago, and her sister flew in from the west coast to attend the ceremony. She and I are on our way to the graduation. About two miles from my house, a guy pulls out in front of us as we're approaching a stop light. There was a backed up line of cars in the left lane, but not in the right lane. So, as we're coasting toward the light, a car comes out from in between two cars in the left lane line to try and cross the road. Needless to say, the guy didn't look before trying this and pulled out about two car lengths ahead of me.
Going around 35 mph, there wasn't anything I could do when he stopped after I blew my horn and braked. As the anti-lock brakes did their thing, I managed to swerve to the right just enough to miss him, but that left me heading into the curb that edged the parking lot entrance he was darting across the road to get into. Car impacted the curb at probably just under 30 mph, and came to a stop up on the grass. Gave a glance in the rear view Mirror
and noticed the car then pass behind me. My sister-in-law said she was okay, and I turn to look out the back window to see where the car that cut me off went.
I notice the car is rounding the restaurant in the front part of the parking lot and is heading toward the exit on the other side. Without giving much thought, I shutdown the engine, and jumped out of the car to give chase. I'm about 20 yards behind the car in a full sprint wearing a shirt, tie, slacks, and dress shoes. As I get to close enough to read the plate, the car pulls out on the road on the other side of the parking lot and starts to accelerate. While running, I'm dialing 911 to get a cop on the way. The car is getting away as I chase it down the road, but the light 500 yards ahead changed to red, and the car stops, so I keep chasing.
A couple in a minivan pulls up along side of me and asks what's wrong. I explain that the car up ahead ran me off the road then took off. The guy tells me to jump in and off we go. He asks who I have on the phone, and I tell him 911 has just connected me to the local dispatcher. At this point, the man tells me he's a local police officer and to hand him the phone. He talked to the dispatcher (calling her by name) and directed her to send a unit to our location. We then followed the guy to his house, where the other unit arrived a few minutes later.
The policeman took our statements and cited the guy for failure to yield right of way. I chose not to press the issue of the running from an accident scene because the other guy was 85 years old and didn't think he did anything wrong. Yes, I was feeling nice.
After days of waiting for the insurance company to make up its mind, and to talk to my witnesses that were nice enough to stop at the scene and give my sister-in-law their phone numbers, he was found liable by the insurance company. He was still claiming to have done nothing wrong, but they decided his policy will pay for everything. They are also going to medically review his driving ability and possibly take his license.
CAR REPORT: It got finished today, but I'll see it tomorrow. The front bumper cover was scratched at the bottom, and the splash guards were messed up. The left rim was bent in the front, and both lower control arms on the suspension were bent. The rim was replaced, and the suspension parts were changed, and the car aligned perfectly. No damage at all to the unibody. The car took it pretty well, and will be good as new. They are even fixing a rock chip on the Hood
for free while they are at it. Total came to $1800 and took two weeks to fix. I took it to the Lexus body shop that had worked on my MR2 and Type R in the past. They do great work, and frequently work on Porsches and Ferraris when asked. Very nice facility.
It was frustrating to go through, and it made for a bad weekend. I'm feeling just fine, and the car will be just fine as well. You just hate to have that happen in a 2 month old car. My wife has also been hating the Corolla rental she got, but she'll be back in the IS soon enough.