Crash! Bang! Pow!

colour cars

I had a car accident.

Or put more accurately, a car accident almost had me.

The graphic above shows what happened apart from one detail: we were tail-ended by a truck. A very, very big truck.

Here’s pretty much word for word my description to the insurance claims officer as to precisely what took place –

I was in ‘pole position’ (meaning first in line), sitting stationary at a red set of traffic lights. For approximately 15 seconds prior to the accident, a large Isuzu truck had been in line behind me, also waiting for the light to change. As truck drivers seem fond of doing, this oversized vehicle was resting so close behind me I could practically feel the drivers breath on the back of my neck as I sat waiting for the light to change. Suddenly, with the lights still red, I felt and heard an almighty crash-bang impact to our car from behind.

The hit from behind felt more like we’d been the target of a shoulder-fired RPG (rocket-propelled grenade). For an instant, it felt like our car was in the grip of a magnitude 9.5 earthquake. The back windscreen instantly shattered into tens of thousands of tiny shards of plastisized glass and the explosive noise of that was one of, if not the loudest, sounds I’ve ever heard in my life.

And all because, in an ill-timed moment of relaxation, the truck driver behind me let his foot ease off/slip off the clutch. Well, that’s my theory anyway, and according to a number of people I’ve spoken to since, that is the only logical explanation for what happened. Because, important to note, the traffic light was most assuredly still red when the wallop happened. Thankfully I also have the name and address of a male witness who stopped at the scene who’s prepared to vouch for that if the need arises.

Did I mention that my seven-year old daughter, still dressed in her pyjamas, was in the  back seat at the time? Safe to say, she took a lot more of the impact than I did. Don’t think I’ll ever forget the look on the truckie’s face after he’d approached my driver’s side window to exchange details and saw her perched smiling in the backseat with a slightly perplexed though calm look on her face gazing up at him. Both my daughter and I sustained no injuries but my wife and I have since taken our daughter to the doctor for a precautionary checkup and been given the all clear.

Mercifully the insurance claim process (we’re with the company with the two joined pronouns for a name plus the slogan “We get you”) has been pretty painless to this point. Although we do have to wait 17 days until our car can be fitted into the insurance company’s preferred repairers’ overtasked schedule for a new back windscreen fit.


That means we faced the prospect of driving around for the next fortnight and more, sans rear window. That was until my wife came up with what I think to be a rather novel and cost-effective solution to our missing back window problem. At her prompting, I have now affixed, with water-proof taping, two study-desk plastic place mats we just happened to have lying around at home to the gaping space. They’re see-through and now secured in place with the tape to serve as our temporary back windscreen. From a distance you can’t even notice anything is different.

Necessity (and penny-pinching DIY)  is the mother of invention.


Desk-bound no more. Our new (temporary) back window panel.





9 thoughts on “Crash! Bang! Pow!

  1. Dear Glen,
    Happy you and the family uninjured.
    I say get more trucks off the road and support rail.
    Amusing cartoon, taken from the “My time in the Torres Strait series?”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Glad this turned out to be a tale of seven-year-old stoicism and a nifty make-do-and-mend philosophy and nothing worse. Uncle Bryan is right – the truck should be off the road and its cargo on a train: much greener and much nicer….

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Welcome Bridget.

    Thankyou for commenting. It is indeed my privelage to be in receipt of thoughts directed here from 16 000 km away from someone with in excess of 5000 blog followers. That’s something that definitely doesn’t happen every day!

    Seven year old stoicism is spot on. As we all move through life and begin to have to endure more ‘hits’ (figuratively speaking) our supplies of stoicism can definitely start to deplete.

    But a seven year old? Full of beans and tomorrow is always a brand new day.

    ‘Uncle Bryan’ is of course not related to I but a retired teacher who served time with me a few years back when I was posted to a small island community in the Torres Strait (half way between the very northern tip of Australia and the country of Papua New Guinea). The local island kids used to call him ‘Uncle Bryan’ (Bryan being his first name) and the title has stuck – at least for me. I expect he will be chuffed to read that another person has endorsed his comment re keeping heavy trucks off suburban roads.

    Many thanks again Bridget.


  4. Hey Glen,
    I’m happy to hear that you and your family are safe and sound after going through such a terrible accident.
    Sounds like the driver was running late for a delivery and he was using his foot instead of his brain! I realise that accidents happen on the road, but this sounds like one that could’ve been avoided.

    Let’s hope that it never happens again!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks Matt for your kind thoughts.

    In the days since, I’ve checked out a few insurance policies from different companies on line and windscreen damage (as happened in my case) appears to be so common in accidents (which makes sense since the glass is the most breakable part of a car) a number of companies list this as an ‘extra’ that you must specifically request (and thereby incur a greater premium) when you take out a policy with them.

    Living is learning.
    Living is also filling out forms.
    Lots and lots of bloody forms!


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