More than often it happens that we end up paying for other people’s mistakes. In a country like ours where driving sense does not exist in majority of people, chances of the above mentioned happening are more on the road. I was unfortunate enough to catch a live example of the same when I met an accident 2 days ago. Luckily and thank god for it, I was unharmed but it was my Thar and my wallet that took some damage.
I was on my way to work in Gurgaon and it was about 4 PM on a Friday evening. Now as one enters Gurgaon from Delhi side, there is a flyover right after the Toll Booth and in front of Ambience Mall. This flyover turns to it right the moment you start climbing on it. On top of it, they have planted some vegetation on the divider which has grown to almost 5 to 6 feet in height. Now because of this turn in the road, and the plants on the divider; if a person was driving in the lane right next to the divider; he or she will be in a blind spot for a good 300 to 400 meters until the road turned.
To add to all of it, the road right before the flyover is extremely wide. There used to be tool booths here a few years ago but then those were removed because of the traffic jams caused. Now that entire area is like a huge ground with excellent roads; causing vehicle to gain a speed of almost 80 to 90 kilometers while passing through here.
So unaware of what was waiting further ahead of me, I crossed the toll and started to drive up the flyover at a speed of about 60 to 70 kmph. I was in the lane right next to the divider so could not really see too far ahead because of the turn in the road and the plants on the divider. And all of a sudden, there was a Volkswagen Polo parked right there in front of me, in the overtaking lane, along the divider.
You do not really expect to find a parked vehicle in middle of the road on a highway. This is what happened with me. While I was taking the turn, I kind of saw it at the last minute and tried my best to avoid the accident. All that I could do however was to apply brakes to reduce the impact and try turning my car to the left which did not really help much. My effort to steer left however ensured that maximum damage happened to my own car and it reduced the damage on the Polo.
Now this guy in the Polo have had a flat Tyre. His Tyre had actually burst at that spot an hour ago. So rather than try turning his car to the left and park at a spot where others could see him, he decided to park it right there; on the highway, along the divider, at a blind spot where cars and buses were coming at him with a speed of 80 to 90 kmph. Some puncture repair guy had come and taken the burst tire of his car to fix it. And now he was waiting at that spot for his flat wheel to be brought back and bolted in the car.
On top of all of it, he did not even care to stand out of the car; or to put up the warning triangles; or made any sort of attempts to warn the oncoming traffic. Instead, he was sitting inside of it and smoking a cigarette when I rammed into him. Now when I think of it, he was actually lucky that I ran into his car; and it was not a Bus or Truck that could have killed him.
What followed was an hour long argument of whose fault it really was. The puncture repair guy meanwhile arrived with this flat Tyre and fixed it after which he drove away. My problems were however far from over. In all this hassle and fuss, my car keys got locked inside. So now I was standing parked at the same spot where the other guy was with nothing that I could do about it. Every vehicle was coming at me at 80 kmph. I knew that the my Thar was at a blind spot and any minute, someone else could run into my car the same way that I did.
Luckily nothing of that sort happened even though we did have a few close calls. I called a few friends from office and they came with a mechanic. It was well past 9 PM before we were able to open the door of my car and leave the spot.
Now my Thar is at the service center to get fixed. I am to visit these guys tomorrow to provide my insurance documents. The front bumper is bent, fender is damaged and there is a bent in the bonnet as well. The real damage in the accident to my pocket however is because of the accessories. The wrangler grill in front of the Thar and the side arches is accessories and as far as I know, they do not get covered under insurance. I will know tomorrow how much this is going to be a hit on my pocket.
All this hassle, damage, risk of another and even serious accident; all because one guy did not have the common sense of where to park his car. His argument was that his tire burst due to which he could not move his car. My argument was that the tire was gone anyway; what more damage could have happened if he drove another 50 feet to a safe parking spot.