Crap, it sucks! My Celica is in the shop, yet again. This time, it's due to the winter storms that hit recently.
I'm driving to my Mom's place, I'm dropping off a paycheck to get deposited the next morning. My mom uses the same bank, lives closer, and is generally up earlier than me, So, as a favor to me, sometimes she makes a deposit for me, since she's going there anyways.
Anyways, I'm on my way to her place. I stop at a "T" intersection, and turn left. The plows hadn't yet gone down the street, so the snow was thick, normally not a big deal. I'm going slow (about 10-15 MPH on a 25 MPH street). That's when it happened.
Sometimes, a situation arises that could only be called an "Act of God", something so unavoidable; so predestined, it occurs without mercy, and the situation is completely out of your control.
Unseen by me was the 1" thick sheet of ice that covered the street, as it turns out, the plows only ran once, earlier that day. They salt the road here in Illinois, this melts now and ice...
...but when you dump 6" of fresh pack snow on top of that, all that melted stuff refreezes into thick sheets of ice.
I was on a sheet of unseen ice, and was beginning to drift to the right, going nose-first straight towards a mailbox. Not just any mailbox, but the grand daddy of them all, a bricked up mailbox, designed to thwart those teenagers with cherry bombs and baseball bats.
When my tires hit the ice, the car nosed over to the right, I ipplied my brakes "anti-stop brakes" is what they should call them, because I swear, there was no grip whatsoever, the car did not stop sliding to the right, I cranked the wheel hard to the left, and tromped the gas, this made the nose drift left, however, I was still sliding to the right.
When you only have three seconds to react to a situation, it all goes by so quick, but it's like slo-mo. you remember everything. in retrospect, I should have tried engine braking by putting the car into "M" and downshifting, or perhaps I should've pumped the hand brake, in an attemp to regain control, but as I said, three seconds isn't much time.
However, I did manage to save my car from total ahnihilation. Apparently, by sliding the nose to the left, I managed to save the front end. I bounced it off of that brick mailbox.
the steering wheel was tweaked, and the car was handling all squirley. The dude who owned the box didn't seem to give a shit. Asked if my car was okay. I said no, glanced the damage over. his mailbox was pristine. I drove to my Mom's place, only a block or two away (where most acidents occur) and surveyed the damage.
The front fender is nicked around the wheel well, and a small dent is there too, the TRD
front suffered a couple gouges and scrapes from the bricks, and the passenger side-marker was shaved (the socket and bulb survived unbelievably.
The front passenger-side rim has a few gouges in it from the bricks, it seems as if I broke a tie-rod end, may be a damaged CV axle, or some other suspension bits. I'm also having them check the tranny.
all in all, the damage was minimal, it's already been towed to the shop. in a week or two, my Celi should be right as rain, and back on the streets.
Insurance covers all repairs, minus my $500 deductable.
also, I noticed as they were putting it on the tow truck, the driver's side tire seemed low on air, I've just had it pached for the 2nd time at the dealership.
All this said, it's interesting to note that I will probably get new rims & tires soon, and am looking into some fiberglass z3 fenders. that way, if the repair is sloppy (or they don't replace my rim like their supposed to) my car will still be fresh.
Well, my tale is done. I hope it will serve two purposes.
1) be careful in winter conditions, it's slippery out there.
2) Even the best, cautious and experienced drivers will get into an accident once in a while, some things are unavoidable and out of your control.
Drive safe out there kids