My last post was how bad Palo Alto drivers are. Well now I have physical proof. I was on my way to work, Monday June 13 at about 11:15AM, stopped on University south bound, 1 1/2 blocks north of Middlefield. I looked up and had just enough time to think “OH SHIT!!!”
A kid in her step mom’s Volvo SUV hit me at about 20MPH. I felt like a I was in a pinball machine. Bang! she hit me. Bang! I was knocked into the truck in front of me. Bang! I bounced back into the Volvo.
I got out of the car and and saw her air bags deployed. She was fine. Airbags makes it smell like the car is on fire. Especially with the smoke coming from them. I told her to get out of the car since I did not realized the airbags caused the smell. The truck in front, he seemed fine. I did not realize there was another car in front of him.
These days the first thing you do is pull out the cell phone to call police, insurance, AAA… Well, my iphone died that night before. I was without a means of communications. AAAAAAAAH. Felt a bit helpless. I was going to stop at the apple store to get a new phone before I went to work.
She admitted she was at fault. She lent me her phone. From the text messages on the screen, I know what she was doing. So, yeah, don’t text and drive.
The guy in front said “he thinks he blacked out for a moment”. His bumper was not hit that hard. So, good luck collecting.
Cops showed up. Collected everyone’s info to file the report.
The tow truck comes and wants to take me to Redwood City. I said no. Since I had no phone I had to get him to call my mechanic to get a local body shop.
I get it over there, then get a cab home. It is almost $5 per mile in traffic. Between waiting at traffic lights and $3/mi.
I definitely did not feel myself for a couple of hours. I little shaky. I little shock never hurt anyone?
I relaxed for an hour, called insurance, work and arranged a rental.
Then I drove back to the auto body place, pulled most of my crap out of it. Jumped over to parrot cellular and got the new phone. Talked to the insurance company .
Now, you would think that since both myself and the girl that hit me are both with State Farm things would be simple. NOOOOO. For privacy and protection, they had to have a team assigned to her and another assigned to me.
So to get things to running, I opened a case knowing I’d have to get the car rental and my deductible from them, possibly even having to go to small claims to get it. They are supposed to be adversarial.
I open the case off my insurance Tuesday to get things rolling.
A Thursday I find out I have $12,000 in damage. They won’t say it, but I think totaled after seeing kelly blue book pegs my car at $12k-$15k.
I do some searching on line. It has been over 6 years since I’ve looked at cars. To replace my highlander with a new one is about $38,000. OY. Not ready for those payments.
I look for a used car for the first time in over 30 years. I find that the price range for cars with up to 70k miles are 2006-2009 is mid-20s. I look at certified preowned cars and look at their carfax report online. Found a couple one owner cars with the full maintenance record at Sunnyvale Toyota.
I went over Saturday afternoon and looked. Explained the situation. Mostly making sure he understood I was just kicking tires since I did not yet know if the car was totaled. He had no issue. One Highlander was sold, but the other was on the lot. I liked it, great shape, clean and 50k miles. I told the salesman, Socrates, that I was willing to look at tacomas and 4runners as well. I also gave him my ceiling price out the door. We looked at a couple. I don’t like leather. I don’t need 4wd. He showed me a 2008 4runner with 20k miles. I liked it. We went inside and I saw what certified pre-owned means.
It means a 3rd party checked the car and filled out a form. Then the sales manager and service manager sign off on the form. And, I get a 12k mi/12 month warranty as well and any outstanding warranty from the vehicle.
An hour later I all but own the car. They will hold it for me until Tuesday.
Now trying to get a final word from State farm on the fate of the car. I called Friday to get a status update. No one calls me back. I call Monday, 6/20, and find they are waiting for a salvage estimate. Tuesday I call again. we talk and they say they will total the vehicle. Even though I did not want car payments, I was afraid the car would come back and not drive the same.
So, I tell my boss I’m taking the day to get the car. I go pickup the car, ‘borrowing’ from my self until the insurance check comes in. I’m out of there an hour later. I go to work. 8 days later and the vehicle is replaced.
Fedex package comes Wednesday from state farm. Check is received Tuesday 28th.
I don’t pick up the check until and deposit it until Saturday 7/2. On Tuesday my neck goes out like it hasn’t in years. I get to the chiropractor on Tuesday the 28th and get an adjustment. Does not help. But I can’t move my head enough to go back until Thursday morning. For 2 days I could move my head yes, but not much other motion. Friday I’m fine, but don’t want to drive since you really do move your head around a lot when driving.
The question, can a soft injury like this really be connected to the accident 2 weeks before? I kinda don’t think so. I’m sure there are some schiester ambulance chasers that might be reading this and salivating.
In the meanwhile, 3 weeks, 4 vacation days, a new loan, a newish truck and a stiff neck and I think it is all done.
I hope it is done. The last time I was in an accident, the person in front of me sued everyone, even though a cop showed up on scene before me moved our cars and did not cite me. That freaked me out. I had never been sued, I was served on a Friday evening when I got home. I had no one to call to find out what was supposed to happen. End result, state farm hired a lawyer. After a few months, then lawyers got her to settle for 8K from each party. I was reading monthly report from the lawyer. I got a letter from state farm stating they treated as a nuisance case and would not raise my rates.
So I hope in 2 years I don’t get served again for this one and have to deal with bullshit when I was not at fault.
So, interesting life experience over. Not one I recommend to anyone.
I hope life lets me do with this one I was planing to do with the highlander, drive for 10 years.