Car Accident – Car Totaled

Last week I TOTALED MY CAR. Correction, an uninsured guy ran a red light as if it didn’t exist and totaled my car.

I planned on having my flawless 2004 Toyota Camry for a very long time, but thanks to “Mr. Crossed Six Lanes of Busy Traffic on a Red Light” that’s not happening.

It was a pretty bad wreck (The pictures don’t capture the damage very well), but I fortunately walked out of it without a scratch. It’s not yet 100% sure what’s going to happen with the insurance, all I know is I’m going to be over $8,000 poorer after it’s all done.

I’ve been in two wrecks where a car was totaled, both not my fault, and both times the other person DIDN’T HAVE INSURANCE.

Suppose this wreck was my fault, my insurance would taken care the other guys expenses….but when the tables are turned and it’s HIS fault, I get nothing? Doesn’t sound fair at all, and therefore I’m pressing charges against this guy. All he gets is a minor ticket for driving without insurance?? NO WONDER so many people don’t get insurance, there’s really no urgent need for it.

Here I display my Flash design skills and have recreated a crude version of the accident:

The second I saw him cross into my lane (I had a green light and was going the speed limit) I swerved & braked, but it was too late. He almost hit a bunch of other people going through the light also, and more than 4 people turned their cars around to yell at the guy….two of them stayed to testify for me.

The thing is, I can’t really afford to pull more than $8,000 (Possibly more than $10,000) from nowhere. I also refuse to take a loan for a new car. I will buy a car for cash, even if I have to drive a low-end Kia. In an extremely regrettable decision, I might have to sell off a lot of my stock to pay for this….or start making a lot more money, really fast (I like the latter option)!

I’m grateful this is a financial impact rather than a health impact. I remember seeing the door handle of the truck slamming into my car not even two inches from my face…so this situation could have been MUCH worse.

—————-

Now I need to do the (im)possible and find a NEW Toyota Camry for under $10,000. That car holds it’s value so well that it’s very difficult.

Blog posted on: July 10, 2006

105 comments on “Car Accident – Car Totaled

  1. Max

    Glad you’re alive, man.

    You should sue the guy, even if that means all you get is a right to collect. Drivers like that should not be on the roads.

    Consider looking for a Benz, 300D or a 240D, 81-84. You can buy them out right, and we can collaborate on maintenance and repairs =)

    Reply
  2. kris

    Dear Nev, Can you press charges? Do that, get the conviction and then sue. (Because, if you can get the criminal beyond a reasonable doubt, it makes the civil, balance of probs a bit of a done deal).

    In the meantime, I don’t think you should sell the stock. It would make your luck that much worse if the market took off a week after you cashed in your chips! (It’s happened to me…)

    Reply
  3. Anonymous

    Sorry to hear about your accident. The most important thing is that you have not been injured, disabled or worse. And you are young, you will recover from this.
    I take it you did not carry uninsured motorist coverage (neither do I).
    Legal proceedings will cost you money and you may never recover anything. It is also a huge hassle. It may still be worth it. I myself do not have a high opinion of our legal system at the moment. It protects criminals and victimizes victims even more. (Long story)
    The federal and state goevernments have not done enough to punish uninsured drivers. So you maybe in for a fight on principle but with no financial restitution. Good luck!

    Reply
  4. Neville

    Anon,

    I DO have uninsured motorist coverage. I’m fully insured, but insurance will only cover Blue Book value of the car….I’m still waiting to see what will happen with insurance, will find out in next few days!

    Car was leased, so much of the insurance money will go to the leasing company.

    -Nev

    Reply
    1. Tim

      Check your records to see if you have GAP coverage included when you purchased the vehicle, and you will not lose money between the insurance settlement and what you still owe.

      Reply
  5. Anonymous

    I forgot to add. Insurance companies are quick to “total cars”. You maybe be able to get your car back from them & get it fixed. Of course, I cannot tell from the pictures the extent of the damage (frame & such). Make sure you look into this. It maybe a cheapest way yet to get your wheels back.

    Reply
  6. Anonymous

    The fact that the car has been leased changes a lot of things. It is the car owner (in this case the leasing agency) that will be the major wronged party, and they will write it off. Your case may thus be tougher.

    Reply
  7. me2press

    Glad to know you are alright. I had this happen to me a few years ago. I do not think you should touch your stock. You can find some low priced cars out there and your Toyota should be able to get you some money, there must be someone who would buy it. I had a nice Mazda MX3 my pride and joy and it got totaled. I had to take what I got from the insurance and buy a Daewoo. The funny thing is the Daewoo has lasted longer then the Mazda and it takes a licking and keep on ticking. That’s an option too buy a Daewoo real cheap now and still a young car. Good luck and for sure sue that guy.

    Reply
  8. Steven Biars

    Hey Nev, sorry about your car. I had the same problem happen to me. We had a green light for some time, pulled through, and was nailed by some dumb b!tch from Kentucky who was knee deep in an Arby’s sandwich. She then tried to lie her way out of it, lie to an officer saying she had valid insurance and then producing an insurance slip (which she promptly cancelled after they gave her a proof of insurance paper).

    Car totaled, 20k in med bills for me and about 15k for my girlfriend. Still waiting to settle and this happened back in February.

    This is why I’m a fan of humane euthanasia.

    -Steven Biars (Shawnee State on your facebook)

    Reply
  9. Jens Kuhfs

    glad you are okay !!! Most important !
    That’s why I always rent cars. My favorite is sixtusa.com from Germany. No discussion and I hate to clean cars :-)
    Take care, Jens

    Reply
  10. Anonymous

    Austin traffic is terrible, Texas drivers are crazy. (just kidding, God bless Texas)Glad you are ok and that’s the most important. Cars can be replaced, Nevs can’t be.

    Reply
  11. Anonymous

    Nev,

    You should consider buying a 2002 or later Hyundai Elantra (or Elantra GT). Holds value well, cheaper than a Camry, just as reliable, leather is standard. Insane warranty.

    Reply
  12. Jonathan

    Seriously, that’s crazy. Really glad you weren’t on your scooter!! No wonder I’m not allowed to get one.

    I don’t understand how you’ll be $8,000 poorer, though. Do you owe the lease company $16,000, and your insurance will only give you $8,000?

    Reply
  13. Alex

    Glad to hear you’re okay. Sucks that your car was totalled.

    Good luck with all the crap that is sure to follow.. :)

    Reply
  14. Anonymous

    No offense, but you should probably have your “financial blog license” taken away for the revelation that you lease a car. That’s right there with racking up credit card debt and interest-only mortgages as far as stupid financial moves go.

    Reply
  15. Cap

    yikes. like others, I’m glad you’re okay. hope you can find a Camry for under 10K. The new generation is out, so perhaps your particular model will be cheaper.

    Reply
  16. Jay

    Weird…up here in Canada , you need ot have insurance in order to drive your car….I mean you can have nothing on your own car..but legally you need like 1M-2M coverage for the other cars….weird how the USA works

    Reply
  17. DK

    Nev,

    I am so sorry to hear about your wreck.

    I am very glad you are ok. I have been in accidents (not my fault) and it can shake you up for a month or so.

    I know you will find the car of your dreams!

    Reply
  18. Dividendium

    Hey Nev,

    That really sucks, but as every one else has stated, glad you’re okay.

    Keep the stock, and save up for the car you want. Take a look at Craigslist. You can get a cheap car on there right now in Austin with AC.

    I looked a week ago and saw dozens for around $1k. The only problem they have is that they aren’t “pretty”. But that means they’re as cheap as they’re ever going to get. In a year when you’ve saved up the money to buy what you want, you can sell it again for what you paid for it.

    That’d be a whole year of “free” driving, not counting gas and oil changes. Even the Toyota doesn’t hold its value that well.

    Cheaper cars also have much cheaper insurance since there’s no reason to keep comp/collision or uninsured (assuming you have health insurance).

    Dividendium

    Reply
  19. Anonymous

    First, I am glad that you are uninjured.

    Second, in your post you went on & on how you would lose money on this accident but only in the comment section did you bring up the very important fact that you were not the owner of the car, the leasing company was. So you want to go after an uninsured guy for damage on a property you do not own?
    For most folks leasing a car makes no financial sense. However, if you have done the math and figured out that leasing a car under “your business” makes financial sense you should have been writing all expenses associated with the car off. So now I come to the fuzzy point. Are you losing money here because the lease made no sense? Or are you trying to go after a guy (who most likely does not have much to start with) in hope of bringing in extra cash? Is that another crazy idea of yours? I agree with a previous post questioning your financial acumen.

    Reply
  20. Andrew

    I was in a similar accident with an old tank of a car that ended up side swipping me and totalling my car. Luckily I was not seriously injured. You will figure out the financial situation and if you made any mistakes leading up to this accident you will learn from this experience.

    Reply
  21. Anonymous

    Why are you against a car loan? If you are paying less interest on the loan than you are making in your portfolio, you are better off taking the loan than paying cash.

    Reply
  22. Anonymous

    Why are you against a car loan? If the interest on the loan is lower than what you expect from your portfolio, it makes more sense to take the loan and keep the cash invested. You come out ahead.

    Reply
  23. Anonymous

    Why not take a loan? If you are expecting a greater return on your portfolio than what your interest rate is, would it not make sense to keep the money and take a loan?

    Reply
  24. Anonymous

    Neville,

    I’m truly inspired by your page and have been following it for the last year. As you see in business contingencies happen and what a true S.O.B the whole situation is. I recently had my spare car stolen and I feel your pain!!! Don’t buy a Honda!! You’ll probably just waste your time pursing this doosh-bag (attorney fees, court costs, & time wasted not being productive). I’d say lick your wounds and move on with life. I’m driving a 1998 Camry w/120k miles runs like a top and I’ve never had a problem in the last 2 years. I’d try checking craigslist for a possible 1998-00 Camry [range=$3900-6000]. I’m not sure if you have Carmax in your city, but a great used car company w/great warranty. Great stock too might I add, especially for all the 1000’s people in your situation.

    -Dord Lornsell

    Reply
  25. Nite

    Figures.

    All this happened to you because I chose to go to bed at 10:00PM, rather than 12:00AM. I’m sure there’s a series of events connecting my bedtime to your accident, though I don’t have the time to trace it all out.

    Just blame me.

    Reply
  26. low-rider

    Glad you are ok. I have a blog where you can post this wreck story and pictures from this wreck. I like your flash drawing. Visit my blog to post your wreck story and also hear other’s wreck stories and how they dealt with insurance. The link to the site is iwreckedmyride

    Enjoy some high-speed chase and street racing videos too.

    You can also email me the pictures from your wreck at: post@iwreckedmyride.com

    Enjoy !

    Reply
  27. friends of canada

    yo dude i may not even know u and all but guy today is my 16 bitrthday and i would not even think about tkaing that shit i would think once and once only SUE HIS ASS thanks for ur time and take my advice

    Reply
  28. Anonymous

    Man, i am SO sorry. What the hell are these crazy people doing out on the roads? I know how you feel, back in July i was crusing in a rental mustang in the ATL, yeah and some dumbass in a beat up pick up truck runs straight into the back of me at a red light. When the officer asked me why i stopped i said “because it was a red light”, and he said to the guy, “exactly sir”. Haha, so that guy got the ticket, but now i am facing consequences. it’s time for paying up and someone needs $ fast. i can’t find his info and i don’t think he has insurance. he’s nowhere to be found, and now i’m up s-creek without a paddle! the officer made me think it was no big deal, and that i’d be okay, but now i can’t find this guy! for the love…can u believe people like this?!

    Reply
  29. Anonymous

    I sympathize for you…I too experienced a similar accident…although the car that hit me didn’t have to cross over a country to total my car.
    What harsh penalties are in place to protect drivers against those without insurance!? It sucks! Well kinda…I called a lawyer and he helped me avoid getting stuck with the bill of a new car,etc. If nothing else, I def. recommend at least talking to a lawyer to see what your options are. I found my lawyer online and I will never use another lawyer again…HE WAS AWESOME! Daniel Buttafuoco (he said that he wasn’t related…it was one of the first questions I asked). The number is 800-Now-Hurt…i think their website is the same: http://www.1800NowHurt.com.
    Hope this helps bro.
    regards,
    Rob

    Reply
  30. Anonymous

    next time you buy or lease a car ask for the GAP coverage. It is avaiable at the dealer. It covers any amount your insurace company does not reimburse you. say you owed 25,000 your insurance company says your car at the time of accident was only worth 20,000 you would be obligated to pay $5000 for a car you can’t drive. That is where the GAP coverage comes in. They cover the cost left on your autoloan. It is good to have. I highly recommed it.

    Reply
  31. Anonymous

    you need to get an attorney and sue your insurance under the under insured policy coverage. that is, unless you have already settled your claim…

    Reply
  32. Claimbuster

    I’m sorry you had to go through this! I’m writting a book and I need to collect CCC and ADP total loss appraisal reports. Could I get a copy of yours? You can blank out all personal information if you wish. If you don’t, I will. I just want example appraisals, I don’t want the owner of the vehicles implicated in any way. If you haven’t recieved your settlement check, I’d be willing to give you a few pointers on how to raise the value of your vehicle to fight the insurance co for more money, in exchange for your help.

    My email is info@claimbuster.com

    best wishes,
    Danny

    Reply
  33. Doctor Quadlander

    Hello Nev,

    Sorry to read about your bad luck. It was bad fortune indeed.

    If you and your readers would like to protect yourselves in the future there is great advice at the site http://www.CarAccidentNewBraunfels.com

    I hope you have great luck from now on while driving…

    Michael in Texas
    ____________________

    Reply
  34. auto accident lawyer

    I still can’t beleive that people drive around without even third party insurance – it is a nightmare waiting to happen in the event of a serious accident (for both parties).
    I thought your flash animation was great – really helped explain the damage to your vehicle – I think you should consider a career in crime scene recreation :)

    Reply
  35. Car Accident Austin

    Yes, uninsured motorists is a huge problem where I live.

    Almost 25% of drivers here are under-insured or un-insured.

    And that leaves the rest of us in harm's way.

    Car Accident Doctor

    Reply
  36. Greg

    Neville (and others),

    Sorry about your accident, one thing I found recently that can help in these situations is a Smart Phone app called my911. It instantly calls 911 and gives your coordinates via GPS tracking, I suppose it could save your life.

    Reply
  37. skhan

    The second I saw him cross into my lane (I had a green light and was going the speed limit) I swerved & braked, but it was too late.

    Reply
  38. McKeowns Solicitors UK

    Hi man, I am so sorry about the car accident and I hope you are OK?? I understand completely how your feeling as that has had happend to me before where there was a car driver without insurance. That really sucks!! as this means that they dont have 3rd party insurance and we are not covered for the damages, I really hate those young drivres which do this. What I do suggest is maybe hiring a personal injury lawyer to help you out as you could possible claim for some money to help you with your injury but just make sure it is a no win no fee as it is not worth pocketing out some more money. I used McKeowns Solicitors UK and they did a pretty good job and now it doesnt feel as bad!

    Reply
  39. abhishek

    I don’t have any pictures, but I have an excellent story. My mom was driving my dad and I home from Kmart on December 12th 2000. We had just got on freeway 99 when an idiot in a 1993 Dodge Stratus doing well over 80 hit our 1988 Chevrolet Astro. He hit us on the rear drivers side tire. We spun three times, hit the (Newly built) cement divider. Bounced backwards into oncoming traffic. My mom looked up and saw a big rig coming towards us. We were then hit again by another guy going 75. Thank God for that! He moved us out of the way just in time. We landed with our rear axel snapped on the cement divider. My dad jumped out and literally ripped the sliding door off it’s track and got me out. My mom got out and carried mo over the divider. (I was seven) My dad walked over to see if the guy that hit us first was alright. (He flipped three times landing upside down on the divider.) The guy was FINE! HE HAD FALLEN ASLEEP!!!! >:( Any way the paramedics arrived within ten minuts. All that happened was a broken foot (my mom’s) A concussion (mine) And a broken leg (the guy that hit us the seccond time.) Anyway, all three cars were totaled and I am still afraid of driving in cars. (But can’t wait 4 my license!) The only thing I can say is: Don’t drive drowsy and always be aware of you surroundings!
    whiplash compensation

    Reply
  40. PHagerman

    This type of accident is way too common. The good news is, just because the at-fault driver didn’t have insurance doesn’t mean you can’t collect on the damage he caused you. In fact, you shouldn’t have to pay that $8,000 out of your own pocket, then turn right around and buy another car just so you’ll have transportation. You have rights, and you need to contact a car accident and injury lawyer to help you get the compensation you deserve. This site can help: http://caraccidentandinjurylawyer.com. They’ll find you a local attorney who will fight for the money you have coming! If you haven’t settled this yet, I’d highly recommend them.

    Reply
  41. Cole

    This is would have been an experience =//
    But your damaged car is still worth money.

    Text me at (541) 203-0845
    anytime brotha

    Reply
  42. Car Crash

    Sorry man, that’s rough. It’s no fun to have to pay money for something that wasn’t your fault. It bites to have to pay for something that happens in a split second that you weren’t planning on. My husband accidentally shattered our windshield when replacing the wiper blades and it was not fun to pay an unexpected $200 for something that happened in a split second. Anyway, good luck. I know it was a while ago now so I hope everything worked out okay. As a precaution, I would check out this website – http://www.carcrashpain.com/
    it could save you money in the future.

    Reply
  43. Greta Jourdane

    jee wizz nice looking car what a bugger this happened, I dont know about USA but insurances are a rip off here, we have had major flooding in Queensland recently lots of cars, homes destroyed, and guess what? insurance companys haven’t honoured their promises to the people have they. I have no insurances, I dont belive in them, they’re just a con and the public trust them because they’re conditioned to believe banks will save them, insurances will save them infact its why I enjoy what you have to offer Neville, to be so kind to pass on your knowledge. I believe in indivuality, a person who is outside the box. Anyhow instead of paying out lump sums to insure your car, house, just open another bank account and put some cash in there weekly least you have control over your own money and wont have to live with broken promises in dire straits when your insureres wont pay out and make it more strssful for you. :-)

    Reply
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  45. Reece

    The only time I would ever sue someone in a car accident is if they were at fault and they were uninsured and/or drunk. If I were you, i would get a GOOD ass lawyer, because that will actually save you money. Sue him for court costs and car costs!

    Reply
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  48. Skousen Gulbrandsen & Patience

    Sorry to hear man… I was in a wreck in Sept. where almost the exact same thing happened to me (luckily she was insured, and it wasn’t my car) but it was hard to prove cuz there were no witness so they only claimed half responsibility (BS I know…) But if it weren’t for going to a lawyer, I might not have gotten anything… I would at least look into it!

    Reply
  49. Tow Truck

    These accidents are really increasing day by day due to nonconformity with the traffic rules of the country. I am feeling very bad to hear about the above incident. Its really threatening.

    Reply
  50. mark

    im looking for a camry parts car to fix the one i just bought. can i buy yours? gimme a call 706 three9two 2five80

    Reply
  51. Ian Waldron

    That looks like a pretty rough accident. Sorry to hear about the crappy luck, but you’re very lucky to walk away with only property damage and not a personal injury claim.

    Many times, uninsured motorists are covered under insurance policies. Our office handles a lot of personal injury claims where the injuries sustained in a crash like the one you’ve mentioned can require hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills (you can see some of the cases we handle at http://www.injurytriallawyer.com/practice_areas/seattle-car-accident-lawyer-l-washington-automobile-accident-attorney.cfm).

    Good luck man, glad you’re alright.

    Reply
  52. Alicia

    Reminds me of the time I totally my 2010 Altima, I only had it for two months and I crashed it. You should’ve seen how I cried when it happened. But then I called my parents and they explained to me how car insurance works -_- Thank God I’m still driving her today lol. It was my first car BTW.

    Reply
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  56. Melgie

    well that’s why it’s better to have insured especially when you have your own car.. in times like this. personal injury lawyers can help you sue and the the right amount of compensations. with that I bet you can buy another high end car..

    Reply
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