Don't Mess With Our Street

There are not many on this planet that I would consider to be the very dregs of society, but none come closer to the top of the list more than Drunk Drivers.

If you're going to have a few drinks, then decide to drive home, you deserve more than the law can throw at you. And by "more" I mean longer, harder sentences, and more severe punishments. If you cause injury to others or worse - then you should have the book thrown at you. Literally.

But I digress.

Last night, I was a poorly boy, and just after 7pm, I went to bed.

At 9pm, I was woken by a sickening crunch - the sound of metal-on-metal, followed by an engine revving wildly, followed by another crunch, and a third, final crash. I jumped out of bed and flew to the window and looking outside, the road and pavement outside the house was showered in glass and bits of "stuff" of various shapes and sizes. Kellie ran outside in her dressing gown, phone in hand. Looking side to side, down the road - some eight houses away - was a smashed up car, belonging to an elderly neighbour. Looking the opposite way, the culprit had managed to embed his car into the front of a parked transit van.

While throwing on my clothes to go downstairs, I heard several shouting voices:
"He's trying to run for it!"
"F$cking grab him!"
"Get the c**t!"
Followed by the sound of the wind being knocked from someones lungs.

By the time I arrived downstairs and outside, the first police car had arrived on the scene.

Everywhere outside was showered in glass, plastic, twisted metal, bits of plastic, pieces of rubber. The neighbours had come out en mass to see what was happening. Kellie was talking to a couple of neighbours, one of which was the old man that owned the first trashed vehicle. Bless him he was all shaky and upset, but worse, he only got the car in November.

Looking at it now, it looked like it was written-off. It had been parked in the road. Now, with it's back to us, the left-side of the car was crashed and scraped against a lamppost and street sign. The front right of the car was twisted and bent, and the back-right tyre was at a ninety-degree angle to the rest of the car.


The offending car was in all sorts of a state, the side I could see was scraped and buckled, the wheel was twisted, there was smoke or steam coming out from the engine, and the drivers door was open. The car was empty.

The front of the car was in as much as a state as the front of the van it had hit - clearly at speed. Twisted metal, broken glass, shrapnel littered the area. Something leaked from the two vehicles too.

The whole street was lit by the strobe lights of the second and third police cars to arrive, and the paramedic car that arrived shortly afterwards. As we watched, the driver was hoisted out from under a small group of lads a dozen or so feet away by a couple of burly policemen and "pressed" against a police car.

The stupid bastard could hardly stand. While the police searched him, two other officers held him up. Every time they relaxed their grip on him, he started to fall down. Paralytic, would be the best description. Blind-Drunk also fits.

As soon as the cuffs were slapped on him, he started. Shouting and screaming, help me, help me... Crying about how hurt he was... He was chucked into the back of the police car, and the paramedic checked him over. Considering how fast he must have been going to shift a car from road to the pavement (through a sign post) and to carry on and smash into a van, the paramedic left him in the care of the police...

After talking to Kellie and the neighbours, a clearer picture of what happened emerged. The drunk was going fast along Long Riding even after 70 yards, but had little control over the car. From the correct side of the road, he lost control and veered onto the wrong side, smashing into the old neighbours car, which was thrown off the road, crushed against the lamppost and smashed a signpost half-over.

From there, he decided the road was for losers, and travelled - at speed - along the footpath by the street, past our house, then back onto the road, where he veered across both lanes, then over-corrected back across onto the wrong lane, and finally, ended up smashing headlong into the van. From there, he tried to run, where the community spirit of Long Riding stood firm, and instead of letting the fucker escape, he was wrestled down to the ground.

Kellie was up and about in the living room when she heard the first smash - the neighbours car being hit - and rushed to the window, where she was greeted by the flash of a car shoot past our window fifteen feet away.

Seeing it veer then crash, she grabbed the phone, dialled 999, and shot out the front. Bless her, in a flash of adrenaline and panic, she wasn't quite firing on all cylinders. From what she tells me, the conversation went as follows:
999: Emergency, which service please?
Kellie: Erm... Um... Er... (She is mentally ticking off the different services) Police please.
999: Police, what's your emergency please?
Kellie: There's been a car crash!
999: OK, whereabouts are the cars please?
(Now, what the nice man on the end of the phone meant was, whereabouts has the accident happened, so we can send the men with flashing blue lights)
Kellie: It's smashed into a van!
999: And which road is this?
Kellie: Long Riding... OOH! The driver is running away!
999: Can you see what else is happening?
Kellie: He's running - oh, wait, no - they got him.
After that, it was addresses, contact details and general questions, but she was quite shaken up bless her. After we came in, she had to have a cup of tea and sat to chill out for a while.

We're just thankful that there was no one else around when it happened. Had someone been parked outside our house and sat in their car, they would have been hurt. Worse, had it been Thursday evening, Jaysen would have been on the path outside home at the same time he was speeding along it.

What-Ifs, I know, but scary stuff. Fingers crossed the police throw the book at him, and he ends up in jail. Kudos to the police, the emergency operator and the paramedics for getting here really quickly. The three trashed vehicles were gone later that evening, and the only evidence that anything had happened was some debris scattered around, and a "School Ahead" sign at a jaunty 70-degree angle - which was fixed the following morning.

The moral? Don't drink and drive. Ever. Additionally, if you DO, and try to flee the scene of the accident, don't do it on Long Riding - you can't outrun an entire street that is pissed at you.

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