Lucky near-miss!

13 years 9 months ago #24170 by Pumpkingirl
Lucky near-miss! was created by Pumpkingirl
I was on Auckland's southern motorway tonight, heading home after picking up a Trade Me win (very nice rimu desk :D ).

I was in the left hand lane doing 100km/h and a ute went past me doing maybe 115 or so. As he got about 30m in front of me the right side of the back of the ute suddenly dipped and I thought, shoot, he's gone off onto the grass in the centre median strip, and immediately took my foot off the accelerator anticipating his reaction.

All of a sudden the whole back end of the ute is on the ground and there's black smoke everywhere and he's veering over in front me and onto the side of the road. There was just enough room, thanks to buttoning off my speed and I was quite relived I'd done it.

I slowed but then kept going as he pulled over safely (despite smoke!) and stopped, but I cannot for the life of me figure out what happened. Is that what happens when your back axle goes? Or your suspension?

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13 years 9 months ago #342270 by DiDi
Replied by DiDi on topic Lucky near-miss!
Phew PG - thank goodness you anticipated a problem and avoided a collision. :D

I had this happen to me on the motorway once when I was in the middle lane and saw a van with a large hire trailor in the left hand lane start to fishtail. Instinct just tells you it is going to get worse. Fortunately, the traffic was light and I was able to hit my hazards and planted myself on the white line between the two (ouside) lanes. It worked - everyone instantly slowed down to a stop and just as this was happening, the van lost it and ended up across the two outside lanes! Sitting in the passenger seat was a child in a car seat. The driver just looked horrified and terrified but thank goodness they didn't roll and were able to pull off the motorway.

I know exactly how you feel and felt! [:0]:confused:[8D]

As for the axle - no idea.

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13 years 9 months ago #342280 by Stikkibeek
Replied by Stikkibeek on topic Lucky near-miss!
Sounds logical it was an axle, although I would have thought they are far less likely to break as they used to do in older cars. He might also have had a wheel come off and it could have gone upward into the wheel arch, otherwise you would have seen it perhaps, careering up the road. Other possibility is that there was a water drainage grate off it's foundation and he dropped a wheel in, but that would likely have struck the front wheel first and flipped him.

Good thing you had your wits about you. It could have been very nasty.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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13 years 9 months ago #342294 by Simkin
Replied by Simkin on topic Lucky near-miss!
That was a very lucky escape. Good to know that this sixth sense is working.

As for a cause - there are cars on our roads that have had a bad rear-ender. The rear half of the vehicle is cut off and replaced with the rear end of another crashed car that had it's front end badly damaged and consequently has been written off. Our car is one such car - I was hit from behind by a Toyota Landcruiser as I was waiting on an intersection to turn right. It is common practice in NZ to do this kind of repair and once you have such a car you are stuck with it until it falls apart as nobody wants to buy it:( We wanted this car written off, I went right up to the insurance ombudsman but to no avail[}:)]

If this kind of repair is done poorly the rear end of the car may come off. As the exhaust pipe will break in the process, too, you could have a possible explanation for the black smoke. Plus if it was a ute it probably had rear wheel drive so the rear wheels probably seized up and the tyres - at 115ks - would produce quite a bit of smoke, too.

I'm glad noone was injured.

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13 years 9 months ago #342299 by Sue
Replied by Sue on topic Lucky near-miss!
Phew PG! Good on you for quick thinking, but it leaves you a bit on edge when you think what might have happened!

I had the suspension of OH's company car break on me once. The front drivers side wheel sort of broke off and veered up into the mudguard, though still sort of attached-it was on a reasonably new (2-3yr) Mitsi I was only doing about 40kph in a straight line at the most as I was approaching a compulsory stop on a country road.
I thought a tyre had burst as there was a bang and sort of smoke, as I veered across the road into a letter box! It was evidently metal fatigue, something to do with a wishbone(!) but thank goodness it didn't break when he was tearing down the motorway to Wellington, as he did the day before.
The house owner came out and after hearing the bang and looking at the wheel asked if I needed to change my undies!!!

Labrador lover for yonks, breeder of pedigree Murray Grey cattle for almost as long, and passionate poultry person for more years than I care to count.

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13 years 9 months ago #342300 by igor
Replied by igor on topic Lucky near-miss!
Sue, that's just not good enough on a new car. Even crap from Japan is usually designed to last at least five years before they expect you to dump it and buy another one.

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