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Old 23rd September 2008, 20:57   #1
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Default My tryst with a rogue Private TN bus

There I am driving my way back to Bangalore from Trichy. Crossed Namakkal and getting close to Dharmapuri and thinking about having an early dinner there.

Notice a trucker overtaking another one. Since this is a two lane road and the left side has a fall, due to it being dug out for road widening, I slow down to let the trucker pass and finish his overtake.

Noticing that he is not going to complete the action by the time I slow down to a slow roll and am almost on the side of the road. The truck passes and I slot 2nd gear to get back on road and accelerate. But wait, it seems one private bus guy decided he can also do the same and is completely on my lane.

Both of us notice each other too late. I realize he is going to hit me, so only option is to take it when it will cause least injury to us. And unfortunately, I am getting back into the road and he is moving out of his lane. So, both of us were facing each other. If left in the same trajection, he would be climbing on the hood of my car and on top of me!

I turn left, trying to slot in 1st and accelerate. The bus driver turns right but is having the truck he is trying to overtake which limits his ability to move back into his lane.

The bus-car point of contact was the driver door handle. It scraps by pushing the vehicle to the side. The bus also hits the truck on the other side. I am sitting there holding on to the steering with legs locked on the brake. Also noticed that the beading holder has come off and was held off from getting into the car by the glass (I was running with the windows close and A/c on).

A second or two later, it is very silent. Turn back and check how wife and kid (who are in the back seat on the left side, as always on my long drives); they are fine. Unlock seat beat and get out.

Walk towards the bus, which is on the right lane and driver putting his head out. As I approach him, he starts shouting at me in Tamil, asking me if I have sense and know how to drive and to drive properly. (I am sure, he notice the KA registration and thought he had an advantage!!!).

But this was the limits! Driving like a maniac and putting my family's life at risk and this guy has the balls to tell me this. Walk up to him, caught hold of his shirt, pulled him down and told him in plain (*cough*) good Tamil as to what I thought!

Told him to park and wait for cops. Traffic builds up. Strangely, had only one smart alec who found nothing wrong with the bus guy and told I am at fault. Told him to shut up and watch the show.

Some time later, a police van comes down and couple of passengers actually go down and tell the cops the bus was driven as crazy and hence this accident. The inspector comes down to me and tells me (in perfect English) that if I want I can settle it else I can take him to the station which is just 4km away, but not to cause a traffic jam. They also thought I did not know Tamil.

All said and done, finally got the driver to pay up, even though it would not cover the entire damage.

Taking the bus to the station would be the ideal thing to do, but with my family and the requirement of leaving the car at the station atleast for 2 days, and being late evening (around 1830) and with 200+kms left, I did not want to do it.

This is where the vehicle was before and after the accident, on the left most end of the road. Only the front end of the vehicle moved out the line.
My tryst with a rogue Private TN bus-image006.jpg

The vehicle which did the honor!
My tryst with a rogue Private TN bus-image007.jpg

But in all this drama, there was a wonderful surprise. While arguing with the driver, noticed one person walking up and talking for me. Turned out that he was driving with his family and he was just cut across by the same bus when it had overtaken him.

On noticing the accident, and also on noticing the registration, he felt that people might take advantage due to the language (again, KA registered vehicle). He stopped and came down to help me, even though he was travelling with is family and could have conviniently driven off! He came down to me, while his wife went to my wife and kid, to check if they are OK and to be with them while I talked!

Appreciate that persons helping attitude and very much thankful to him just for being there. In fact, if I had shut up and let him to the talking, I might have ended up with a bigger compensation than what I got!

Have to send my car to Surakshaa day after to get it fixed.
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Old 23rd September 2008, 21:53   #2
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Scary man, i actually had a chill running down my spine.

Horrendous driving on those roads and then the attitude.

Really comforting to know that your family is safe.

Sometimes i wonder why no one does anything about these bus drivers.
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Old 23rd September 2008, 21:58   #3
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It was a close call. If I had not turned the vehicle at the last moment, as also done by the bus driver, I would be under the bus wheels. And I was also lucky that I had kept the windows closed, else the beading that was pealed would also have got into the vehicle and hit me!

All in all, a close shave and thanking my stars that nothing happened.
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Old 23rd September 2008, 22:51   #4
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@HappyWheels, first and foremost Thank God you and your family are safe!! It could have been a real disaster! These maniac buses are real pains breathing down your neck, risking everyone's life in the process.

Secondly, i think this calls for a seperate thread.
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Old 23rd September 2008, 23:04   #5
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@Happywheels - you surely had a very close shave and were extremely lucky to have come out unhurt. Please start a seperate thread for this. And also what was the feeling inside you when you were sure that the bus would hit you? You must have an amazing presence of mind to have moved the car at that point of time. Most people would have frozen there seeing the bus on the same lane coming at that speed.
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Old 24th September 2008, 07:41   #6
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Kudos to your responses in an emergency! Perfect.
Alas the damage to the car is such that there will have to be denting/painting repair done to the rear side panel. No replacement possible, as it part of the body shell. Please do not opt for renewal of this part, as it will then be welded on, compromising the structural strength of the cage.
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Old 24th September 2008, 10:05   #7
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Definitely, a scary experience, but your family is lucky to have a level-headed driver. Your responses were just right, more so since all this must have happened in a few moments.
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Old 24th September 2008, 11:34   #8
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Good to know that you are safe with your family, these buses are driven like maniacs and you presence of mind saved you from a bigger accident. There is no option left than to switch "ON" your dipper and move as left as you can.

Check with Suraksha, fast Cars and Sai Colorium for the damage repair as its denting/painting which all these are well versed with.

Last edited by Jaggu : 24th September 2008 at 13:09.
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Old 24th September 2008, 11:56   #9
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OMG. Its really scary.
But hearing that all are safe and no injuries, its a relief.
Let us know the updates of the car repairs.
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Old 24th September 2008, 12:06   #10
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Close shave indeed, HW. Glad to know you and your family were unhurt. It was nice of that other person to come and join you, and send his wife to comfort your family.
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Old 24th September 2008, 12:15   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benbsb29 View Post
... It could have been a real disaster! These maniac buses are real pains breathing down your neck, risking everyone's life in the process...
So true about the disaster; looking back I am very well aware of how lucky I was to have not even a single scratch after such a incident. It could have been very very bad! But, I did bleed some blood there - how? Just before I started after this incident, I felt sad looking at the damage and ran my hand across the damage portion and two of my fingers got cut by a metal piece which was jutting out! So that added the final ingredient to this masala!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
... And also what was the feeling inside you when you were sure that the bus would hit you? You must have an amazing presence of mind to have moved the car at that point of time. Most people would have frozen there seeing the bus on the same lane coming at that speed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by prabuddhadg View Post
Definitely, a scary experience, but your family is lucky to have a level-headed driver. Your responses were just right, more so since all this must have happened in a few moments.
I am not sure about my presence of mind at all times, but it did some work during this time and I am thankful for that. Since I was in second gear when the truck passed, I knew that I cannot pull out fast enough when I saw the bus. My concern, once the front of the car was missed, was if the point of contact might be the B pillar, even that would have been bad! But once I realized that there will not be any direct hit, but just side-to-side scraping, I applied the brakes fully, to stop the vehicle from rolling off the left. The road (or ground) on the left was fully dug up for the road expansion works. Its surprising how time actually slows down when such things happen. It felt like I had enough time to see and analyse all this. But the truth is, far from that. People do wonders when they know that their and their loved ones life is in danger!


Quote:
Originally Posted by anupmathur View Post
Kudos to your responses in an emergency! Perfect.
Alas the damage to the car is such that there will have to be denting/painting repair done to the rear side panel. No replacement possible, as it part of the body shell. Please do not opt for renewal of this part, as it will then be welded on, compromising the structural strength of the cage.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dadu View Post
...Check with Suraksha, fast Cars and Sai Colorium for the damage repair as its denting/painting which all these are well versed with...
Absolutely right about the part. Am going in for denting and painting and not for any welding. Have already had a word with Surakshaa. Will be sending it today / tomorrow.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mjothi View Post
...Let us know the updates of the car repairs.
Will sure do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
... It was nice of that other person to come and join you, and send his wife to comfort your family.
This is the memory that I want to carry from this incident. There are still people who are concerned about another human. Planning to visit him, with a gift, the next time I drive thru Namakkal!

Last edited by Jaggu : 24th September 2008 at 13:10. Reason: responding to posts
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Old 24th September 2008, 12:52   #12
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My God, HappyWheels, that was a providential escape for you & your family, I shudder to think of what it may have been.
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyWheels View Post
I am not sure about my presence of mind at all times, but it did some work during this time and I am thankful for that.
I must compliment you on your lightening quick reflexes. That's what saved the day for all of you, glad you were unhurt
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Old 24th September 2008, 12:54   #13
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Happywheels. Thank God.

Just goes to prove that Well-trained reflexes are quicker than luck
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Old 24th September 2008, 14:18   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bblost View Post
Happywheels. Thank God.

Just goes to prove that Well-trained reflexes are quicker than luck
OT. Was it McEnroe or Corrors who had said- The more I practise, the luckier I get?

Keep practising whatever you have been, Happywheels.
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Old 24th September 2008, 15:12   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyWheels View Post
So true about the disaster; looking back I am very well aware of how lucky I was to have not even a single scratch after such a incident. It could have been very very bad! But, I did bleed some blood there - how? Just before I started after this incident, I felt sad looking at the damage and ran my hand across the damage portion and two of my fingers got cut by a metal piece which was jutting out! So that added the final ingredient to this masala!!!
It really hurts to see your prized possession injured. Wait.. didnt i personalize it too much? To me, my car is part of family anyway!
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