X88 expeditions - Documenting and sharing overland travels, adventures, and expeditions

April 26, 2007

Goodbye Ol’ Blue - The Accident

I stopped to look at a map when nature called. As I was walking away from the truck I heard some very loud crackling and turned around. The rest is history.

I checked under the vehicle extensively and did not find any damage (broken control arms or crushed bushings, etc.) so I started driving out of the woods slowly. It felt OK. Got to pavement and checked again. Still felt OK. Started driving to an OPP (Ontario Provincial Police) station to file an accident report when the wind that was strong to start with (hence the tree fall) picked up even more, and it started to rain ... hard.

Started thinking what else could go wrong when I came upon a restaurant in a small lakeside town where the people were great. Gave me some thick plastic and a whole roll of duct tape to seal the open window. Kept driving when the rain stopped and a double rainbow appeared.

See this tree ...

It fell on my truck.

Thought maybe this was a good sign of things to come. But it got me started on some philosophical thinking.

I have resigned my thoughts to a couple of realities:

1. Destiny (higher power) - That tree was destined to fall over at that exact time. Which means that the combination of the thousands of choices I made that morning (travelling back to Toronto from Ottawa) led me to the exact time and place where this was going to happen, no matter what I did.

2. Chance (butterfly effect) - By stopping at that spot while the wind was fairly strong, my vehicle caused a minute change in wind speed and direction just enough to topple the dead tree on my roof. In other words, if I wasn't there, it would not have happened.

I'm not sure which one I believe yet. But I know one universal truth, and that is that insurance companies are evil.

What I have gathered so far is that if the adjuster values the repair at more than the book value of my Trailblazer (which is low as I have 200,000+ km) that it is automatically a write off. And according to a trusted mechanic I have, he believes that this will be the case as this could be an 8K to 10K repair job ($CDN).

The problem with the write off is that the insurance company will then negotiate with the leasing company to buy out the vehicle, but not for the full value of the lease, but for the book value. Which means I am stuck with the difference, and I don't get to keep the truck! And I'm not even getting into all the mods I have done, thats a whole other topic.

All my summer plans, shot to hell ...