#3093 – do the right thing, do the wrong thing

ok, for those of you who did not or for various reasons could not hear my phonepost in my previous post: i witnessed a pretty major crash on the highway on the way to school today.

i left the house around 3:40-3:45 (class didn’t start until 4:30, but i wanted to get there a little early, in case i ran into traffic or anything on the way up – kind of foreshadowing, huh?). around 4:05 i was driving up i-97, in the left lane, keeping up with traffic – so i was about 70-75 mph. i was right about here near the center of the image (zoom all the way in for better detail) when i saw a white compact car go zooming past me in the middle lane. i didn’t really pay much attention to it except to think that they were going awfully fast for the traffic. up ahead from me about 200 feet or so was an suv in the center lane, and as i saw the white car get close i thought that if that driver didn’t look out he’d crash into the back of the suv. as soon as i thought that, guess what happened? BOOM! the compact car slammed straight into the back of the suv, debris flew everywhere – it was like a movie, seeing everything happen in a sort of slow-motion. i don’t even remember the brake lights coming on the compact car before it hit, and the suv of course didn’t know what hit them. the white car had to have really been going fast since we were already crusing along with traffic at about 70-75 mph and it passed us at a much faster speed. both cars veered off to the right and off the road: the suv going down the slight embankment and then flipping over and over a few times, while the white car swerved off the right hand side of the road past the suv. the “B” in the image is just to the right of a cvs pharmacy – the cars ended up in the ditch at the side of the road just to the left of that cvs, about where the shadow of the car is.

i immediately pulled off to the left-hand side of the road (couldn’t pull off to the right due to traffic), and immediately about a half dozen other people did the same, but only one or two others were with me on the left hand side. i bust out the phone and dialed 911, and actually had to wait about a minute and a half until somebody picked up – they asked if i would need police, fire, or ambulance and i told them police and ambulance and that it was due to an accident on the highway. when he heard the location he said that help was already on the way.

i got out of the car and sat on the guardrail in the split between the highways while i waited for authorities to arrive in case there was anything i could assist with. one of the ladies in the car that pulled off behind me ran across the highway to see if she could do anything to help (i suppose – once police arrived she ran back to her car). fire trucks and police arrived within 3 or 4 minutes.

when i had arrived and was on the phone with 911 i saw the guy get out of the white car – looked like he was in his late teens, early 20s, but i couldn’t tell really well where in that range he fit best. i think i saw people get out of the suv, but i wasn’t sure what with the people all running around over there.

the fire trucks arrived from the other direction, but good thing there was an emergency turnaround just behind where the accident occurred – police blocked the cars on the highway while they let the fire trucks through. once the fire trucks set up and the police and at least one of the firemen were assisting the passengers and talking to the people on the right-hand side of the road, i hung around for a few more minutes in case they needed to ask me anything about it, but they didn’t indicate to me that they wanted to ask me anything and i wasn’t going to go running across a busy (though rubbernecked) highway, so once i saw them start to talk to the people on the other side i got back in the car and made the previous phonepost before heading to class.

amazingly enough i arrived at campus at 4:24, and made it to class right at 4:30 (the teacher gets rather upset about us being on time, and if she was going to give me any crap about being a minute late i would have shown her the 1:38 call to 911 that i made. 😛

anyway, once i got in the class (followed by a few other people a minute or so afterwards), the professor asked us for our homework, so i turned in what i thought we were supposed to do – (we’ve been doing a project this semester in which we make an entire database, and mine is based off of the system at work) – for this project, she’s split it up among several “deliverables”, and every other week or so we turn in one of these deliverables, bringing us closer to our finished project. i had thought that we were supposed to turn in one of these deliverables today, so that’s what i turned in, even though most of it was based off of something we just learned to do last week, and so was rather confusing to do. well. while we worked on a problem in class, she came around and gave everybody back their assignments, and came up to me and asked if i turned my assignment in. i told her that i did, and asked if she wanted the original that i had turned in weeks ago and she had made suggestions on and gave back to me, thinking that she wanted to keep everything all together. she said no, it was the assignement she gave to us to do last week, due today – the deliverable is due NEXT week. i laughed nervously and said that i got them mixed up (because i had – i totally forgot about the assignment she had given us last week and thought we had deliverables due both today and next week). i don’t think she was very happy about that – i was going to tell her that if she wanted to i could do it tonight and email it to her, but then we went over it in class anyways so it was a moot point.

after class i bumped into my friend derrick who i had taken a c programming course with and talked with him since he was going to be switching majors from computer science to information systems, and he was curious about some classes. he showed me a sheet he had written down the classes he wanted / needed to take and asked me about some of my professors for them, and i told him about the crazy professor i had last fall who gave us a survey and question #1 on the survey was “besides the time spent complaining about the class to the head of the department, how much time have you spent on the class?” (i never filled out that survey, it was very accusatory). as i was telling him about how that professor was batshit insane and had us do that survey and nobody liked her, my professor came out of the room and i saw her out of the corner of my eye looking at me – i don’t know if she thought i was complaining about her (i kept trying to steer what i was saying to make it sound like i was talking about someone else, since i was), or maybe she wanted to talk to me about my assignment. anyway, after she left and i finished talking about professors, i went to the car, gave money to mike for white rose tickets (the fraternity chapter’s formal dinner), and drove home.

again on the drive home i encountered idiots, like the people who didn’t know how to drive in the rain and kept mashing on their brakes, to the people zooming around again (freaking me out after this afternoon), and (my un-favorite) a car behind me driving IN TWILIGHT, IN THE RAIN, IN POOR VISIBILITY, WITH NO HEADLIGHTS ON. the only way i was able to tell there was a car behind me with the rain and spray and darkness and all was by seeing a silhouette in my rear view mirror. argh, i HATE it when people don’t use their lights in poor visibility. goddamn.

and then i came home and the internet keeps crapping out and i saw the orioles lose rather pathetically to the athletics. i also didn’t hear back today (while i was at work, at least – i only worked until 1:30 today) about my interview – hopefully i’ll hear about that tomorrow…

tomorrow night is going to be hanging-out with the guys night, so that’ll be fun.