Insurance Auto Auction, Seattle, Washington

Interstate 5 was a Saturday-night nightmare. A torrent of traffic after a Seahawks’ game poured north in a driving rainstorm. Clouds of spray spewed behind vehicles, cutting down on visibility, when outside the passenger window of my Volvo station wagon loomed the huge grill of a monster pickup. “Isn’t that strange,” I thought, “a truck coming right at me.” And then, BAM!

The collision pushed my car out of the left lane, and there was another loud crash when it slammed into the concrete barrier lining the median. The cargo windows blew out, sending glass shards into the empty backseat. I struggled to steer the car along the barrier while stomping on the brakes. That tense process lasted a few seconds but seemed longer; the car filled with the ear-splitting sound of concrete grinding into metal. Once the car came to a stop along the median barrier, I took a quick injury inventory and found not a scratch, not a bump, not a drop of blood. I was incredibly fortunate, but the car was not.

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