Sunday, April 3, 2011

Putt Putt and Scraggles try to go to conference...

Here is the story for everyone who didn't get the full scoop:

So Sunday morning, we had tickets to go to General Conference up in Salt Lake. We woke up to 4 inches of snow down in Provo (crazy because i've been wearing shorts all week!). We jump on the highway and start on our trek up to Conference. I was driving, Hayley was sitting shotgun, Putzer was back left, and Elizabeth was back right.

We were passing Lehi on I-15 in the lefthand lane at about 8:15. It was rainy and so there was spray coming up onto the windshield. I saw infront of us that the car was slowing and stopping, and that the cars in front of him were swerving into the righthand lane. I started slowing down and came to a prompt stop at least 10 feet behind the tan car in front of me. There had been a small fender bender or accident in front of the tan car, and there was an asian guy outside his car waving his hands for traffic to slow down. 1. Why didnt they get into the lefthand emergency lane? and 2. Why are you outside your car waving your hands? Scary.
We didnt skid or screech or anything, it was just a hard stop. When we stopped, we all kind of gave a sigh of relief and said 'phew.' I look in my rear view mirror and saw a big white pickup coming hard right behind us. it was able to slow and swerve into the emergency lane between us and the barrier to our left. I am looking out my left window saying 'good thing he didnt hit us.' Then all of a sudden i thought 'OH NO! WE'RE GOING TO GET HIT!' (these thoughts happen in about a fourth of a second.)
Suddenly there was a BOOM! We were thrown forward, my face into the exploded airbags. We rocked forward into the tan car infront of us. As the car was bouncing back, we were hit again. The car came to a stop, and we were all stunned. There was smoke in the car, presumably from the airbags. Needless to say, we were pretty stunned. We sat there for a couple of seconds and didn't say anything, then when I thought it was safe-ish and we weren't about to take another hit, I opened up my door and got out. Hayley climbed over from her side out my door, and then Putzer and Elizabeth from the back. We walked out between our car and the barrier and just kinda looked at the car and what happened. There were about 9 cars in the pile-up.
The driver in the tan car infront came back and was talking to us and told me to turn off my car. He was an older man and wasn't injured at all. We didnt talk to anyone else until the firemen and police came.
A police officer came over and identified me as the driver and handed me something to fill out. A fireman came a minute later to talk to each of us and see if we were okay. He talked to hayley and she had a little debate about how old she was. She told him, and then he was worried about me because of my forehead, but I told him i was okay. I then took some pictures of the car and began filling out the report. Putzer and Elizabeth went and sat in someone's car who had stopped because Elizabeth was a bit shaken up and in pain.
George Benson had driven through the crashed cars and stopped to come and check on us. Sam and my friends Bryan and Matt were with him. They came over and were talking with us and looking at the car and stuff. A bit later a couple came over and had Hayley and me go get in there car. They had their heat blasting and people sitting in there getting looked at by paramedics. Hayley sat in there and I had to go talk to a police officer and get some papers out of my car. When I came back, she was crying a bit and shaking pretty hard and said her neck hurt a bit, so I went and grabbed a paramedic to talk to her. He was helping her calm down her breathing, and the owner of the car was giving her tissues and helping out a lot.
Elizabeth and Putzer left in an ambulance to head down to the Provo hospital about a half hour after the crash. Hayley and I left about an hour and twenty minutes after. We left just as they were scooping ESPN (my beloved friend and car) up onto the tow truck. I jumped into the front seat of the ambulance and we were off. I talked to Hayley's sister, and then to her parents. Sitting in the front seat of an ambulance with their daughter on a stretcher and neck brace in the back was not the ideal way to talk to her parents for the first time... Luckily Hayley was doing well. In fact, she was asking the paramedic in the back if she had all of her teeth and if she was still cute!
We got to the hospital and we were in a room near putzer and elizabeth. Elizabeth had had x-rays done do see if she had any broken ribs, and they took Hayley for a ct scan on her head and neck. we were there for a long long time, and all turned out well. Elizabeth was fine, and Hayley had a mild concussion and strained neck muscles. Putz and Elizabeth left about 45 minutes before us. Hayley's aunt and uncle made the drive down from north of Salt Lake to come and check on us and make sure she was alright. They were really nice and helpful in getting the medications and taking us back to our apartments.

Today we are all pretty sore and tired. But we'd all rather be sore and tired than have anything worse have happened to us.

We are really grateful for the protection that the Lord gave us yesterday. We consider ourselves extremely blessed to have been able to walk out of the car with minor injuries. We know that He is mindful of his children wherever they are, and that he truly watches over us. The prayers for protection that our parents offer every day were answered.

Here is an article on fox news. You can see (from left to right) Sam, Hayley, Bryan/George, Matt, Me, and ESPN.

Hayley throwing the dueces with her aunt and uncle

They put this thing between hayley and the backboard. Its pretty cool.
Ready to leave!
I promise she is smiling and not in pain!
Again, smiling, not in pain.

ESPN, my beloved car, went out like a champ. He was a hero. He sacrificed himself to save us. He was a great little soldier in the prime of his youth: 6 years, 40,700 miles. He had just gotten a tire rotation/oil change and new brakes (which probably helped us out a bunch). We had some great moments, but he never stood stronger than yesterday when he saved all four of us in the car. I'm gonna miss ya, bud.

The pictures of ESPN:

Its incredible how much damage was done to the front and back and how intact the cab stayed. That saved us.
This one is my favorite... it almost looks like a transformer in mid-transformation
That white car in the background hit us second (i'm pretty sure). the blue excursion is where we went and sat for a while. They were such a nice couple to stop and help everyone out.

My boy got hit hard

I'm pretty sure that the red car hit us first. We were stopped back where he is, and then between getting hit by him and the white car we got pushed up 10-12 feet into the tan car.

the spoiler popped right off! i should have kept it.

those are the curtain airbags in the window. They saved us big time.


mitch said...

I am glad to see that you are writing again Taylor. I used to be a daily subscriber. but it has been what, five months?!
PS, i believe that Espn is spelled with lower case letters technically. ESPN is a four syllable word aka TV station. Espn is a 2 syllable word similar to 'aspen'

Cody said...

I was the kid driving that huge white truck that dodged you. glad you are alright and i'm glad my truck didn't flatten into the back of you. we went right next to you and stopped in the cavity between you and the guard wall. somehow we were untouched as everyone's cars blew up around us. I did find pieces of people's bumpers and brake-lights in the bed of my truck though.
Cody Evans