Crash and Burn

By Graham Sclater

When I got up yesterday I felt great with absolutely no idea what the day had in store for me. If you had told me that I was going to be involved in an horrific car crash, I would have said that you were crazy.

I’d never had an accident. Well, that’s not totally true. Is scraping the rear bumper considered to be an accident?

It depends who is driving. If it’s a woman, then there is no doubt it would be serious, but certainly not an accident. I wouldn’t consider it serious if it was ever my fault.

Thirty years without an accident. Not a bad record is it? When the published figures state, that on average, a driver will have an accident every 12,000 miles.

Well as I said, yesterday, I felt good and there was no indication that anything unusual would happen to me. The sun was shining, for once the music on the radio was good and I felt fine. But, by the time I reached the M5 things suddenly changed. The sun disappeared behind the blackest cloud and, before I knew it, the rain on the motorway was running like a river. Cars appeared from nowhere and skidded everywhere. The lane markings meant nothing and as a lorry and its trailer slewed across the three lanes I knew that it was time to worry.

Of course it was too late, it always is. Before I knew it, I was trapped, under the rear axle between the huge smoking tyres of the trailer and fighting for breath amongst a tangled mess of wrecked automobiles that would never be driven again.

The rain poured through the huge tear in the flattened car roof, ripped open like a tin, and the biting easterly wind forced the freezing spray and smoke into my face.

There was an eerie silence for what seemed like hours of darkness until I heard the combination of moans and screams of helplessness from the drivers of some of the other cars, although the sudden and frequent moments of silence were much worse.

I felt cold and numb until I became aware of the blood dripping onto my face before turning into a steady warm stream as it continued its journey down my chest and onto my shirt and neatly pressed suit trousers.

I waited patiently, there was nothing else I could do, and after the paramedics loaded me onto the stretcher, I watched the ambulance pull away and race along the motorway, siren screaming, until it was out of sight.

That was yesterday.

Graham Sclater’s latest novel, “Cowboys and Angels” is available in paperback from Tabitha Books and Amazon or in e-book format from Kindle. All of his earlier novels: “Ticket to Ride”, “We’re Gonna be Famous”, “Hatred is the Key”, “Too Big to Cry”, “Love Shack” and “More Than a Woman” are also available in both formats.

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