Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Better safe than sorry.
We are still experiencing sub-zero temperatures. Then came the rain.
As expected, the early morning news is flooded with car accidents in many places due to icy road. I shrugged my shoulders and told myself, nothing will happen to me on my way to work. I will just have to drive extra slow because the roads were icy and slick. I was determined to leave early to give me ample time to get there. I would get to work and put in my 8 hours, then drive home and make supper, watch TV and go to bed.
Everything seemed fine.
Or so I think.
But as soon as I got on the road I realized that getting from home to work can be a problem. The entire road surface for miles is glazed due to the freezing rain that it is pretty well impossible to drive safely on it. I am driving a ford explorer, an SUV with 4x4. Does this offer me any safety?
As I eased my car on an icy road I can feel my four wheels slip on ice just the same as two. So I drove very slowly, about 20mph wondering how long it would take me to get to my destination. If I ever get there! At the back of my head, I can hear a voice telling me to go back and just give up attempting at all. It is a Sunday. I was alone on the road and up ahead the road appeared dark and wet with a dull shine to it.
I was already off Easton when I tried depressing my brake to see if it work but it just skid through. It was so slippery that I could not feel any traction between my wheel and the road. What if I lose control of the car and ran into the ditch?
Yes, I survived my first accident, but the thought of it happening to me once more is very unpleasant. I can still remember the telltale drift of my car accompanied by the sickening feeling in my stomach as I realize I have no steering control. I steered in the direction of the skid, but it has no effect. Seemingly in slow motion, my car turns left and right, spinning out of control, helpless. When I saw it heading towards the ditch, all I can hope is for it to land upright. And it did!. Heart pounding, it took me three minutes to calm down enough to call my husband on my cell phone.
My senses tells me that even if I get to work, coming home in the dark of the night in the same road condition would be extremely hazardous to negotiate. This layer of ice between my tires and the road can take a severe turn for the worse. Four-wheel drive, all-wheel drive, two-wheel drive, it doesn't matter. This black ice is a killer and it could kill me faster than I can imagine.
I am still a long way from Delevan and another 8 miles from there to Winnebago. I cannot take that risk. I finally eased into an open curve and slowly turn my car towards home. I can call my supervisor and tell her I cannot come in and I'm sure she will understand.
Driving home, I feel better. I feel safe.