Please Don’t Drink and Drive
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It is the time of year to be doubly conscious while driving. The roads will probably be slick, there will be people driving way too fast for conditions on the roadway, there will be people tailgating, AND… there will be people who are altered on drugs and/or alcohol, as was the driver of this vehicle. He blew a .145 on the CHP’s breathalyzer device. That is almost DOUBLE the legal limit. Of course you and I will not be driving under the influence… because we CARE about the possible outcome of that type of behavior to others and ourselves. Everyone knows that it is dangerous as well as illegal.
The vehicle had more than “major front end damage”. It was completely demolished. Basically, it was turned into a pile of rubble. How the driver survived with just the injuries he sustained, is beyond me. He bounced off three or four trees skinning the bark from one side of their trunks. The vehicle finally was stopped by three young fir trees, which were spaced closely together.
After about thirteen years of responding to traffic collisions on The Avenue of the Giants,, Hwy 101, and sometimes Elk Creek Road, rarely have I seen the trees lose the match. Although few years back a fully loaded log truck speeding down Elk Creek Road, actually did take out a swath of young redwoods. It looked like a logging show was going on down there The driver was ejected and ended up “waaaay” down in the creek bed. He flew a really long distance and sustained major injuries. He, also, was very lucky to have survived that crash. His injuries were such that I suspect his life is much different now than it was before the accident. Some of us get “do overs” and some don’t.
I can travel down the Avenue of the Giants and point out tree after tree where people perished or were severely injured. In the vast majority of incidents, speed along with drugs and/or alcohol were a factor.
If you see me driving slowly down the highway maybe you will understand why. Conversely, if you see me driving fast, you probably will also understand why as well. Please get OUT of the way when you see red lights flashing. It could be a matter of life or death for someone.
Last night’s incident was dispatched at 2:50 am. It ruined a nice dream. About five years ago, after spending all afternoon preparing a full Thanksgiving feast with my partner (the turkey finally came out of the oven at about six pm ), she and I sat down to enjoy our meal. Literally, as I was taking my very first bite of roasted turkey, the three beeps of a dispatch pre-alert came over the radio: ” beep beep beep…TRAFFIC COLLISION Hwy 101…overturned vehicle into the bank. Person trapped inside…extrication required….
It was very dark with rain coming down. It took a long time to get the woman out of her vehicle. Except for the CHP officers, who were already on duty, more than a dozen firefighters, an ambulance crew, a tow truck operator, and maybe some Cal Trans folks (I can’t remember for sure), responded to this incident. Alcohol was a factor in this incident.
Bottom line: Give yourselves, the other people on the road, and your first responders a break this holiday season.
Drive at a safe speed and don’t drive if you’ve been partying.
PEACE and THANKS