Recently, while having a nice wine and Sous Vide steak dinner at a friend’s house, I got a very sobering text from my sister. It was a poorly lit photo of my mom’s car with the entire driver’s side smashed up and the side curtain airbags deployed along with the text, “Call mom!!”
It looked serious and I instantly freaked out. I gave her a call and she tells me it was my 18-year-old brother driving when he got T-boned at an intersection by a driver that blew through a red light. The speed limit on that street is 35 mph so the other driver was probably doing at least that in his RAV4, which would make for quite the impact. What’s worse, he was obviously drunk and started berating my brother and threatened to beat him up when he asked for his information. Thankfully, my brother walked away without a scratch and a witness who saw the whole thing stopped and called the cops. Long story short, cops came and took statements and end up arresting the other driver.
I’m beyond thankful my brother was wearing a seat belt and was in a 2008 IIHS Top Safety Pick. It scored “Good” (the best score possible) for front moderate overlap, rear, and side impact. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gave it 5 stars for driver side impact as well. By the looks of it, it definitely earned it. The door panels were cracked but nothing pierced through the cabin. My brother didn’t even have a scratch or bruise the next day.
Sadly, our family’s fifth Honda has been deemed a total loss by our insurance company and needs to be replaced. Needless to say, I want my mom in another Honda (hope you’re reading, Helpful Honda Guys).
Moral of the story: wear your seatbelt and absolutely never drink and drive. NHTSA says 10,265 people died in drunk-driving-related crashes in 2015, accounting for nearly one third of all traffic deaths that year. Do the math, and that works out to 28 people every day or one death every 53 minutes. You’ve probably heard it countless times before, but it doesn’t really hit home until you or someone close to you is affected. So take it from someone who has been affected: just don’t drink and drive.