This is a little bit off topic for This Little Lady…, but is something incredibly important that I wanted to share.
As many of you know, in 2004 I was involved in a horrendous hit and run car accident. The other driver was never traced, and was uninsured.
2004 was a long time ago. I know. I also know that because of this accident, my life has never (and possibly will never) be the same. I lost my career. I sank into debt. Because of the complexities of my condition, and because the driver was uninsured, almost 9 years later I’ve not settled a claim. I’m still in pain, I still live a limited life in many ways and I’m still in and out of hospital. But I’m lucky I’m still here…
So why am I writing now? Well. Over the last two days I have (randomly) read two frightening statistics that shocked & upset me.
- In August this year, the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB) revealed that the 1,000,000th uninsured vehicle was seized by police since 2005. ONE MILLIONTH. That equates, shockingly, to 500 per day. This makes me feel sick. 500 people a day could potentially have their lives ruined, or ended, by drivers in uninsured vehicles. And those are just the cars that have been seized. How many more are out there?
- You are 4x more likely to be hit by a driver who is TEXTING, than a driver who is DRUNK. We all know of the dangers of drink driving and hopefully no-one would be stupid enough to drive over the limit. But how many of you have read or sent a text while behind the wheel? Be honest. I have. And 8% of the UK drivers admitted to it in a recent survey. We’re busy people. I’m no saint. I’ve forgotten to put my phone down. I’ve been careless. Luckily, no ill has come from this. But I promise, after reading that fact, I will never text and drive again. And I would love for you to do the same. I’m pretty sure whatever needs to be said can wait. Or pull over. Whatever is best. Just don’t hurt someone because you’re impatient. PLEASE.
I can’t explain how much it means to me to get this message across. You may think it’s unimportant, or it won’t happen to you. I did. But how do you know? There’s only one way to be sure. Just don’t get into your car without valid insurance – or into someone elses who may not be particularly responsible. And don’t text and drive.
I’m not preaching for no reason. I’m speaking from personal experience. I’m on the other side. I’ve spent about 3000 days fighting for fairness, learning to cope with constant pain, suffering nightmares, not sleeping…all because this happened to me.
I don’t know you how you think. I don’t know if these facts will afffect you like they do me. But I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t want to be responsible for taking someone’s life from them? Or for taking your eyes off the road for a few moments and being somehow responsible for a stranger living with a disability for the rest of their life?
This isn’t a dramatic over-assertion. This is real life. This is scary.
A car, we all know, can be deadly in the wrong hands. Accidents happen. But going out there, knowing the risks, and allowing it to happen? That’s not an accident.
I would hate for anyone to ever go through the same things I have been through these last 9 years. It hurts, knowing it could have been avoided. I’m angry that it happens so regularly. I never want anyone I know to be hurt…or to hurt anyone else unintentionally.
If I can only do one things from writing this site – it will be to make a couple of people safer. If only one of you takes notice, it could save a life.
Be kind. Be sensible.