Saturday, December 06, 2008

A very, very close call ....

After "A Season of Joy" performance on Thursday night, Andrew and I headed out to eat with our friends, Todd & Reagan, from here in Red Deer. As we left the restaurant we noticed that it was frezzing rain and everything was glare ice. We headed out to the highway and merged into an ice rink that turned very dangerous. It is only about 9km to the exit for our motel but we did not make it. As we crested a hill, we could see into the valley and there was a huge surprise waiting for us. There were 100 - 150 vehicles, cars, trucks, SUV's and many transports all collected together at the bottom of the hill. Andrew applied the brakes (we were doing 30 kms hour) and could not stop. He pumped the brakes lightly while going down the hill and stopped about 4 car lengths from the transports and other cars. Then we slid, ever so gently, sideways off the road and into the ditch!
We got out of the van to assess the situation and chat with other motorists. Our van was sitting on a very sharp angle and we knew it could flip at any moment. At that moment a truck come sliding down the hill and smashed into the car in the ditch right behind our van. We knew getting back into the van was not an option and now standing on the side of the road was not an option either. So, we walked the 4km back to our hotel ... walking on ice, in dress shoes and high heel boots. It was 1am when we arrived at our hotel.
Tired and wet, Andrew called CAA to get a tow and they informed me the RCMP had shut down the highway! When Andrew met the tow truck driver back at the van the next morning, he realized just how much danger we had been in! The tow truck driver ran his hand back and forth under the front drivers tire and he said the back one was only touching the ground. He said if we had slid 2 inches farther we would have rolled the van.
Thank you, Lord, for your protection as we travel!
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