Do a walk-around before you back up your vehicle. The delivery driver in front of my van neglected to do that yesterday.
I didn’t even have time to honk the horn. He just started his truck, as I sat in the driver’s seat saying bye to my son at the skate park.
Then it turned surreal – and became a “slow motion” moment. I realized he didn’t see me, as the big steel bumper of his truck crunched into the front of my van. I saw the whole thing coming.
The impact pushed my van backwards and caused the mirror of my car to bump my son’s shoulder lightly. Luckily he wasn’t hurt – and overall I’m okay too, aside from some muscle pain in my lower back, which I’m getting checked out ASAP by my doctor. I write this post the day after the incident, and hope it’s a passing discomfort.
The driver apologized several times and looked near to tears. Lucky for him, I’m a firm believer in the philosophy of Be nice not mean and went through the car crash paperwork process, as required.
I spared him any comments like: “You could have killed us!” or “Why the eff didn’t you look where you were going?! You nearly hit my kid!”
Because that’s not how I roll. 😉
Look before you reverse
That’s really the moral of the story, above. Be aware of what’s behind you before you back up, especially if you are right beside a park.
To get the word on backing up safely, I consulted with the Learn to Drive Smart manual from the Insurance Corporation of BC. It’s required reading for new and learning drivers going through BC’s graduated licensing program – and a good review for any driver.
“If you’ve been stopped for some time, walk around the back of your vehicle to check that your path is clear,” it reads. “Before you back up, make sure you do a 360-degree vision check. Look all around the vehicle using shoulder checks and mirror checks, and then turn your body to look out the rear window while backing up.”
So please remember this – and remind others.
Check out the Road Safety at Work website where you will find online tools and resources for developing or improving occupational road safety programs.