Our Christmas shopping trip had gone just great, we had found what we were looking for and were pretty much finished by 4:00 when we did some grocery shopping then had a bite to eat. All that was left of the day was a peaceful drive home to Tisdale and with excellent driving conditions and a nearly new set of winter tires we were in good shape.
Traffic was surprisingly heavy as we headed south from the SuperStore out of Prince Albert. The light at the Carlton Shopping Plaza was red so we eased to a stop behind a green "Ranger" type pick up. A high geared full size pick up following us moved into the right lane and passed us as we came to a stop and the light changed to green. The full size pickup in the right lane rounded his turn west and the green one in front of us eased out across the intersection. I eased out behind him perhaps two or three car lengths back and there was a very loud bang and we were sitting facing west with the hood crumpled up in front of us and traffic facing us stopped for the red light.
From the amount of damage to the car that hit us (below) it would appear that it was a very minor crash but all of that vehicles energy had unloaded on the front of our car turning its front end into a heap of plastic rubble.
I had the wind knocked out of me. The force of the crash had thrown me against my left arm at the door and I was in immediate discomfort from my ribs. My passenger was shock up but uninjured although she had a very sore chest from the seat belt. Since it was a side blow our air bags had not gone off, the engine was still running although every warning light on the dash was on.
A Saskatchewan Department of Highways patrol vehicle was just a few cars back from us and immediately put on its lights and the office put his vehicle behind us checked to see we were okay and the driver of the other car then called city police.
The front of the car was destroyed, there was a ding on the drivers side rear door and the left rear fender. The passenger side front door would not open as the front of the car has jammed it shut.
After this experience I have decided that there is no such thing as a minor accident. Had that vehicle been just a fraction of a second later and struck my door I would not be up and around able to write about the incident.
The problem then was what do we do. Our trunk was full of Christmas shopping, groceries and the typical survival gear we have in all of our vehicles. The City policeman urged us to go to the hospital as that much damage to our car indicated that we had been hit hard. Tow trucks arrived on the scene and what was laying the street was scooped up and dumped on the floor of the back seat. They put our car in the parking lot and though we had attempted to reach a car rental agency that was a no-go and a taxi arrived. We were able to move the contents of the car into the Taxi and set out for a hotel room then the driver gave us a quote for a trip to Tisdale and that was that we were on our way home.
After getting the stuff out of the taxi and into the house we went over and had a Tisdale doctor and nurse see that we were okay. I know I was sure not feeling okay, burping, coughing, sneezing or laughing have been danger zones ever since.
If there is a lesson to be learned from all this it is that green lights are mostly for show and there is no guarantee that it is safe to cross any intersection, with or without snow tires. By the way the picture below shows the car that hit us has all season tires but that probably doesn't matter there was no indication from the crash scene that the brakes had ever been applied.