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Lindsey's first car wreck

Lindsey had a car accident tonight while driving by herself to the PAC (Performing Art Center) for her holiday concert. I always ask her to call me on her cell phone the moment she arrives at a destination, but not while driving. It's actually illegal to talk on a cell phone while driving for the first six months after you get your license in Texas.

Some time had passed tonight while I should have heard from her by then, so I called Lindsey to see what was going on and left a message when she didn't pick up. She called me back--hopefully not while driving--and told me she'd gotten lost and had driven way past McNeil on Parmer, which goes on for miles and miles. (This was prior to the collision.) I told her to turn around and tried to explain the directions again. She was flustered for being late at that point, plus it was foggy and rainy and dark. Then a few minutes later my phone rang, and I heard a crying Lindsey, saying someone had run into her, and the Pathfinder has a big gash in it and sounded strange, and that she was scared. I told her to pull over. She pulled into a parking lot. It was frightening to me, although, and I stayed calm and told her not to worry, and as I had her on my cell phone, I called 911 on the other line from home. She was unaware of her location and couldn't tell me where she was, so I gave the 911 operator her number, then they called her to find her.

It probably worked out well for me to report the accident like that, because basically she was the one who hit someone else (not the other way around), and she had been the one who drove away, obliviously. This whole driving thing is so new and overwhelming.

Long story short, she hit a car while making a left-hand turn by misjudging if there was time to make the turn. She caused that car to spin and hit another car. There were no personal injuries to any of the passengers, but damage to all three cars. I drove to pick her up, then took her to what was left of the choir concert. She got a citation that said "FTYROW - left turn," which I believe means failure to yield right of way, and Kelly's Pathfinder needs to be towed to a body shop. Phew. What a night. Luckily, she's okay. Emotionally, she feels awful, but how else can she learn? I'm just grateful she didn't get hurt. It's also kind of hard not to think of the financial aspect, like how much the ticket will cost, how much our deductible is, how much our insurance rates will go up, and so forth. But all that is irrelevant, when you think about her safety. The moment I arrived at the scene, we embraced for a long moment and I just held onto her tightly. It is so scary to have my child driving!

For the record, in the past, she's scraped the right side of my Camry while backing out of the garage, there are black smudges on the front left side of my Camry which are new. And now the Pathfinder is starting to get broken in by Lindsey. There's no need to go car shopping any time soon during this "bumper car" phase we're in!


Robin said…
So glad that everyone is okay. How scary! I was out there on the road earlier in this dreary weather, and it was definitely nerve-wracking. I could barely see out of my foggy windows to know where the ramps were that I needed to take. Is Lindsey eligible to take Defensive Driving to knock down the price of the ticket? I don't know what the teenagers these days are and aren't allowed to do. I'm just glad that you are all safe and together again.
Madison said…
I know how she feels! I've been in two small accidents since getting my license and I felt absolutely terrible after both. I'm glad she's safe and sound.
Summer Adams said…
Oh my, it is scary as a new driver and especially in all that crazy weather and being lost. I'm had some unfortunate times as well. I'm sooo glad she's okay. Snaps for you for staying calm and doing what needed to be done. Hugs to you both!
Julie said…
I'm so glad she is okay, maybe next time Tom tom can go with her. Be careful Lindsey!
Heidi said…
O man that must be scary having a teenager driving. I got in a really bad accident about a week after I got my license- luckily it was with a rock and no other cars involved. But still, made my parents pretty upset and I can understand why!
Mandi said…
Kelly, I am glad Lindsey is ok and so are you. I am glad you didn't over react. My brother, I and two friends were on our way to seminary one time and got in an accident, close to our home. My parents were on a walk and walked up to the accident. Luckily we all walked away from a very serious accident. It is a scary time, and you have to know that Heavenly Father is watching out for his youth.
ninnies said…
hey mom... I'm glad you're not mad at me, and I'm sooo glad you have a sense of humor. I've also been looking at things from a totally different perspective now, and I'm still traumatized. But I'm glad you still support me, and I love you.
And thanks everyone for sharing scary events you've been in like that. It makes me feel not so alone and faulted.
I'm just glad everyone's okay.
Ohhh, poor Lindsey!! I remember my first accident when I was 17. I was pulling out from being parked on the side of a road, and misjudged the speed of the car coming behind me, and basically pulled right into them. I felt so, so horrible. So much of driving safely is just experience, and some people are just lucky to gain the experience without getting in a wreck, but not me. Not most people. A year ago my sister and I were in my dad's car and a 16 year old boy pulled right out into the side of our car, same thing as Lindsey, he was turning left and misjudged how fast we were going. Boy, he felt awful and I felt soooo bad for him. Especially because it totalled his *brand new* BMW.
I hope it's a good long time before Lindsey gets another fender bender and that you don't take too much of a hit on your insurance. I'm SO glad she was ok and that no one else was hurt. It's really good to have perspective on how much worse things might have been.
Bobbi said…
It's scary being a new driver--but much scarier being the parent of one! All of our kids have had some incidents, but that is just how it goes. Thank goodness Lindsay is okay, that is the important thing.
Megs said…
I am so glad she is okay. Sounds like it was a busy night, but that you handled it super well.
Lonna said…
That is such a scary situation, I am glad that you were able to think straight. And I am so glad that everyone was alright. What a tricky night to be driving around. It is a good thing that we can still drive cars that are scratched up.
Kellie said…
It happens to the best of us, and we're just glad it turns out okay... I ran right into my parents parked car (in our driveway) one night on my way home from high school. I was frazzled and emotional due to some event of the night, which didn't help. I also remember taking the rearview mirror off of our car while backing out of the garage! Woops. My parents were upset, until both of them did the same thing within a year or two. Even experienced drivers aren't perfect.
bless her heart!! glad she is ok!!
Looks like we both have some financial payouts to make soon! Glad Lindsey is okay, because we all know that same accident could have been much worse. She'll keep learning though....!!

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