Sometimes fate comes out of nowhere to remind us of its power and presence. And sometimes a fellow motorist is following the car in front of his too closely and looks away for just a second and CRASH!
I was traveling west on State Road 580 in Dunedin, Florida when traffic stopped for a red light at the intersection of S.R. 580 and Overchash Drive. I had applied my brake and had just come to a full stop when I felt a strong jolt that made my brain feel like it was sloshing around inside my skull and sent my sunglasses flying off my head and into the backseat. My seat belt held me in place and prevented me from sustaining serious injury, but I did have whiplash and a minor seat belt bruise.
For a second, I thought that I had hit the car in front of mine. Then I looked in my rear view mirror and saw that the car behind mine had a shattered windshield and that its airbags had deployed. I grabbed my phone and got out of my car to check on the driver to see if he'd been hurt. He was stunned, but not seriously injured.
The woman driving the car in front of mine got out of her car and walked back to ask both of us if we were okay. Then she said that she had been slightly bumped, but not badly enough to cause any damage to her car (apparently, the jolt caused my foot to slip off my brake pedal, causing my car to roll into hers). She really just wanted to go home, but when she called the police, they told her that she was involved and therefore legally obliged to stay and give her statement to the police.
The Pinellas County Sheriff's Deputy arrived on the scene and the matter was handled officiously, license, registration and insurance information was collected and run through the criminal databases for warrants and such, statements were taken, tow trucks were dispatched and the driver who was responsible was cited for careless driving. All in all, it was a pretty mundane event.