Sunday, 17 November 2013

Another Encounter with The Sussex Blind Drivers Assc.

Another rather too exciting run out with the SKCC. I’d been feeling lousy with a cold, so at best was 50 / 50 for this run, but I woke at 05:00, so I thought I’d go.

Arriving at Newlands there were already three other cars parked up & waiting, so I ambled past them & reversed into the remaining space. My new reverse lights were noticed but deliberately not mentioned – rats!

After a few minutes SteveRST arrived, & a few minutes after that we were joined By DavidT which meant we were good to go. There was a little deliberation about who should lead, but in the end DavidT pulled out of the car park followed by myself. We trundled as far as Godalming before DavidT put himself in the inside lane behind a tintop at some lights while I opted for the outside lane – so then I was in front. Regular readers will know that this never goes well – I seem incapable of following a SatNav while leading a group of cars, but today I did quite well, getting as far as Petworth before turning the wrong way – the SatNav said to turn left, so I did, then it went odd & requested a right turn up an alley, having turned round it wanted me to turn right - the way I had been going – strangeness. But inevitably I was now at the back of the pack when the excitement started. We were on a dual carriageway rumbling along as you do, the other cars were in the inside lane, I was in the outside. I was just considering speeding up to record the cars as I went past when (rather too late) I noticed the speed camera van.

A glance at the SatNav said I was doing 75, so should by OK – we’ll see. Shortly after this we passed a couple of HGVs & then pulled into a side road. I assumed this was a wee stop until the others gathered round DavidT’s offside front wheel. It seems he had been about to overtake the second artic when a Transit pickup which had been waiting to turn right, pulled back into the fast lane without signalling, leaving our man with a choice of hitting it or going under the artic trailer. He chose to take his chances with the Transit & his offside front wheel came into contact with the pick-up’s nearside rear, the cyclewing had been “re-located” & there were witness marks on the tyre wall. To begin with it seemed the tracking was all over the place, but there was no obvious damage to the wishbone brackets, no lost movement in the steering & sighting along the front wheels onto
the rear suggested things weren’t as bad as we’d thought. The mis-alignment was perhaps an optical illusion caused by the misplaced cyclewing. Anyway, after some prodding & a good hard stare Mr T elected to carry on with caution & we set off again. I kept his lights in my mirrors for some time, but he seemed to be OK. Sure enough he arrived at the café just after us.

So, once again rather more of an adventure than we would ideally like, is this just a bad couple of weeks or are folk really driving about without looking where they’re going?

The video clip of last week's "event" is still getting more than 1 hit per minute - over 12,500 now.

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