Sunday, May 22, 2011

Hit and Run

I was heading north to a conference last Tuesday, on a two lane road.  Just after I cleared straight through an intersection, I heard a horn and then "crunch."  I looked in my rear view to see a gold colored Isuzu truck pushing the back left of my little Mojito (Ford Fiesta).  But the guy driving didn't look surprised.  He didn't stop.  He only backed off enough to come up directly behind me, then zip around my right side and cut me off.  By this point, I had slowed below the speed limit to make sure other vehicles passed me and separated me from this maniac.  I was obviously a bit shook up. 

What was with this guy?  I was just heading down the road.  Now, I have learned here that there seem to be unusual expectations about right-of-ways.  For instance, often when there's a two lane road, some jerk will park in one of the lanes for his own convenience, never mind the hundreds of vehicles he's slowed down while they merge to get around him.  When this happens, there is a lot of last minute zipping across lanes, so you really have to pay attention because even if you're in the clear lane, you may have to stop suddenly to avoid someone in the blocked lane who has cut you off. 

But this Isuzu was clearly behind me.  Even if I made a cultural driving mistake, it was quite clear he hit me on purpose, not because I didn't follow some rule of the road.  The only thing I could have done to try to avoid him if I had seen him before he hit me was speed up beyond the speed limit, as there was a car in the lane to my right. 

We were on a road with plenty of traffic and lights, so he only got a few vehicles ahead of me before the next light.  At that point, I wrote down his plate, make and model.  With the local vehicle distributor's help, we reported the guy.  The damage wasn't as bad as it sounded and felt.  But how would I know, I've never been hit before. 

Israel = home of many first experiences.  And plenty of them I could do without.

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