My Wife and Kid escape fiery death, my neighbors don't

That big car wreck in Wisconsin (10+ dead so far) happened a few miles from me. My wife was driving my daughter to school along that route this AM, when she saw red lights, and people running in the road. She slammed the brakes and made it to the median breakdown lane unscathed, but cars careened by her to smash into the pileup, and a lot of cars behind her slammed into other cars in their attempts to stop.

They ended up about 150 feet short of the fireball, in a safe pocket. They watched the fire, and heard gas tanks exploding for about 20 minutes. And they called me.

They got to drive out after about an hour. Then they hear one of my wife’s students, a 14 year old girl, was killed in another wreck a few miles away!

The pics are horrendous!

I still get goose-bumps looking at them. And they put all our problems in proper perspective.

Then I note a name in the newspaper article. It’s the name of my renter and neighbor. He and his son didn’t show for work. Not like them. A bit of one mostly incinerated car looks a lot like his car.

I feel sick.

Holy crap! It’s a good thing your wife is an alert driver.

That’s awful.

The picture you linked to from the Journal…the blue tarps covering the corpses left in the cars…just plain awful.

Holy S**T, I didn’t even realize that’s what they were.

I’m really torn between gratitude and sorrow right now. And I’m afraid to find out who else is missing. Or dead.

Oh, dear God, Qadgop. I am so sorry for your neighbor, but thank God your wife and daughter are okay.

The photos reminded me of the Road of Death in Kuwait during the Gulf War.

My God.

My sister lives (and works) in Sheboygan. Mr. S caught the headline on this morning and told me about it.

I’m sorry, Qadgop.

{{{{ Qadgop the Mercotan and family}}}}
Take care, all of you. I will be selfish enough to be glad your wife and daughter are all right, even though I’m sorry about your neighbors.


That reminds me of the aftermath of a wreck (I don’t call them “accidents”) I saw on the way back from a friend’s plae in Las Vegas. It was a maybe three years ago on I-10 on the California side. The long, long hill down to Baker. A white van with a family of ten in it on its way to Las Vegas flipped in the centre divider, coming to rest on its wheels. Seven were killed. There were bodies under white sheets. I don’t know where the coroner had to come from. Certainly a long way, as that stretch of road is “in the middle of nowhere”. All I could think about was that these bodies would be lying out there in the dirt, in 108°F summer heat, with the countless insects that spend their lives looking for dead things to eat. It made me sad.

My dad told me once abot a trip he took to Reno (I think) back in the 1950s. He said he was passed by a car going about 70-90 mph in thickening fog. He eventually overtook the car. It had run into the back of a semi-trailer (articulated lorry). Its top had been sheared off, along with the heads of the four occupants.

When I had my Porsche I thought about getting a rear fog light for it. This is a high-intensity red lamp on the left side under the rear bumper. The idea was that it would give following drivers an extra couple of seconds to realize there is a car there. Sounds like a good idea. When I move to Washington (fog doesn’t get that thick in So. Cal. – although it certainly does in the central valley, as has meen seen with many multi-vehicle crashes) I may invest in one of those rear fog lights for my Cherokee.

Remember folks: As winter approaches driving conditions will deteriorate. Some places will have heavy fog. Others heavy rain or snow. Many places are subject to “black ice”. And it will get dark sooner. I see mayny, many people whom I’ve named “left seat passengers”. They may be in the driver’s seat, but they are only along for the ride. When you’re in the driver’s seat, you must not allow yourself to be distracted from the task at hand. Pay attention. Drive safely.

Yikes Qad, that’s too close! I’m glad your wife and daughter are OK.

I saw some pictures earler and it looks like the most horrific of accident scenes.

Glad you all are still with us. I’ll skip the pictures, if you don’t mind.

Well, I just spoke to my neighbor’s widow. It’s pretty much confirmed. His car was in the center of it, so he and his son are accounted for.

What could I say? I told her not to worry about the rent, when she was ready we’d discuss her plans for the future. Her husband was my handyman and ran the farm.

Damn dude…I don’t really know what to say, except I’m glad your family is unharmed, and sad that your neighbor didn’t make it. I know everyone else already said the same thing, but…damn…

I saw the pictures this morning. They are truly horrifying. It looks as if a meteor hit the highway.

My prayers go out to your neighbors. Hug your wife and kid tonight.

I’m pleased to hear that your wife and daughter escaped (physical) injury. I’m so very sorry to hear about the loss of your neighbours and your wife’s student.

And once again, you’ve shown yourself someone with enormous compassion. Most of us would have been too stunned by our own family’s near-miss to think about the practicalities of your neighbours family’s situation.

Please let us know if there’s anything any of us Dopers can do to help out your neighbours.

And please, give your wife and daughter an extra hug or 10 tonight.


Oh my goodness. Qadgop, I’m so glad your wife and daughter are ok. What a horrible, frightening time that must have been for them and… Everyone. That’s just awful.

My heart goes out to you, your family, and your entire neighbourhood. This must be a very difficult time for all of you.

If you don’t mind the prayers, I’ll say a few for you tonight.

This is awful Qadgop. I just saw the pictures tonight, but I didn’t know where it was. (no sound, I saw them at the bar) I’m glad you’re wife and child weren’t hurt.

You’re neighbor’s widow is in my thoughts. I know you’ll do everything you can to help them out.


Best wishes for you, your faimly, and all involved…

Wow! Thank God your wife stopped in time!

That’s weird… I had CNN on just a few minutes ago while I was in the shower, and heard about that wreck… then logged on to the SDMB to read your post.

Hug your wife and daughter for me…