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Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Greater Greater Risk to Life and Limb

Tonight I attended a a get together with several of the other writers at Greater Greater Washington, which I really enjoyed. It was my first experience meeting urban planning bloggers face to face, and a lot of thought provoking conversation ensued. Greater Greater Washington has been a great forum, and meeting the other writers it is easy to understand why. I look forward to seeing them again at the 1 Year Anniversary at RFD next week.

The downside to this meeting tonight was that it was in Penn Quarter. No, I have nothing against Penn Quarter (other than the ground-map of the World at the Navy Memorial that has a very outdated rendition of the Aral Sea), but it is quite an ordeal to get down there from Fort Meade in sleet.

On the way home from Greenbelt Metro Station at around 10 pm, I had to call 911 to report a very bad accident 7 car accident on Route 1 that looked like it had just occurred. I think a southbound snow plow side swiped a northbound minivan and a chain reaction ensued. I slowed down, made sure everyone was alright, and called 911 to report it.

Another mile or so up the road (just north of Contee Road), I got a good scare when driving up a hill I saw a Ford Explorer facing sideways and sliding right towards me. I stopped and waited for impact, but fortunately the SUV hit one of the few curbs on that stretch of Rt. 1 and came to a stop. Thank goodness.

Of course, all I could think as that truck was careening towards me was "I can't have anything happen to my car". I wouldn't be able to get to work, or anywhere else for that matter.Car culture has left me putting my property ahead of my health. But hey, I can get to work with a broken arm. I can't get to work without a car. It's too bad, because even trains slowed by the weather would be safer (and probably faster) than driving in this horrible weather.

Fortunately, That was not a problem. But tomorrow when all the tens of thousands of employees of Fort Meade drive to work, how many of them will risk a car accident? For us, we don't have any other choice. For the most part, we don't have any other way to get to work.


Carmen said...

I'm glad you didn't get hurt.

Anonymous said...

Did the guy in the Ford Explorer get hurt?

I hope so.

Buying a 3 ton monster of a truck so that he can safely ram other cars, whose only honest maneuvering advantage is 4WD, and then negligently driving in 2WD without snow-tires or chains on a frozen highway... If it were a bus driver, we could have fired him.

Dave Murphy said...

I'm quite sure he/she was okay, but it looked like the Explorer might have bent an axel.

By the way, American SUV's are on sale on the side of Route 1 in Laurel. So I'm sure it will be pretty cheap to replace.