Tag: accidents

Another one bites the dust

Summer traffic — and we’re now in peak summer season — tends to be horrific.

Motorcycle wreck, Atlántida, Uruguay
Though other vehicle is removed, not too hard to parse: note the skid mark. Posted speed limit: 60 km (36 mph)

convergence of eastbound traffic

We live at the convergence of Punta-bound traffic from all points west. Punta del Este is the glitz capital of the southern hemisphere in January. We avoid it like the plague, but people who want to be there don’t want to be anywhere else. Especially slowed by congestion in Atlántida.

Prime accident location: Atlántida, Uruguay

As I pointed out almost four years ago, the new overpass in La Floresta means pretty much open road after Parque del Plata traffic lights at the river. However, everything between Ruta 11 and there is pretty much one huge clusterfuck: a densely-populated area with numerous intersections. It very much merits caution. But don’t tell that to people racing in from sparsely-populated rural Ruta 11, or the Ruta Interbalnearia from Montevideo, who have just passed through several sparsely inhabited kilometers. Don’t tell that to the Porteños (Buenos Aires) or the BS drivers (see previous link) or testosterone-stoked motorcyclists, all of whom consider it their god-given prerogative to drive as fast as possible, regardless.

Because of the distance between traffic lights, in Atlántida the stream of traffic has often merged into a continuous flow, and trying to cross here can be an exercise in patience with small margins of safety. But crossing options exist: the Ruta 11 bridge is only 800 meters away.

One person tweeted that a motorcycle was run over:

IB accident tweet

No, sorry. Someone going way the hell too fast on a motorcycle slammed into something considerably larger, and possibly became an organ donor in the process.

It’s been over 30 years since one similar slammed into my BMW in a construction zone in Germany. Hast Du mich nicht gesehen?* he asked, lying on the ground a dozen meters from the point of impact. As if I, driving especially cautiously because my parents were in the car, should be responsible for his (typically reckless, according to neighbors) behavior. No sympathy. Even later, hosing off from the crumpled fender a tiny piece of flesh.

* Didn’t you see me?

UPDATE: same time, 24 hours later, a few hundred meters up Ruta 11, another fast bike — bright green — splintered into pieces on the road. Had to keep moving, did not see other vehicle/s involved. Two ambulances on scene, another coming quickly with siren as I drove on.



Cleaning gal (once a week, $150/~U$S6 per hour) wasn’t here five minutes before wheeling into the sliding door with her knee. Events not clear, but apparently an attention-hungry Shi-Tzuh played a part in distracting her. No harm beyond the door.

Alas, it’s Carnaval, and anyone who could repair it ain’t gonna — everything closed.

(And duct tape — even real ‘Murkan duct tape — sucks. There was cardboard on this side as well.)

We couldn’t get too upset, having just heard that Patricia, single mother of five teenagers, has been kicked out of her stepmother’s house and all are living in one room.* Talk about stress.

But it reminds me of a previous cleaning lady breaking a [replacement] coffeemaker glass pot days after we bought it. Which is why we now exclusively use the stainless steel French press our neighbors and friends brought us from Canada.

* update: only she and two kids; the other three are staying with their father

Further addendum: what’s wrong with this picture? The sliding door is made with window glass, not tempered glass, which is pretty much in line with Uruguay being behind northern North America by 50 years in some ways. My father walked through a door like this in 1965 in southern California. In northern (I add northern because some ‘Murkans remain unaware that Mexico is part of North America) North America, she would have had to have something like a metal kneepad, and a serious intent to destroy the door.