More on the Wreck

For those who’ve asked how it happened, it’s pretty much a blur to Chad.  What he says is that he was going about 50 mph, which is apparently not over the speed limit.  He said he wasn’t going overly fast and several cars had passed him.  He had just come out of a curve and realized his cell phone wasn’t on the dash where he normally leaves it.  He looked in the console, took his eyes off the road just for a moment, and Jessi said “Chad!“.  When he looked up, he said he was off the road and heading right for a culvert.  He tried to straddle the culvert but his car sits so low to the ground that the culvert took the whole underneath out of his car and apparently ruptured the gas tank.  When the car came to a stop right at the edge of that corn field, the state trooper thinks the gas was dripping onto hot metal and once the flames got into the dry grass, there was a big fire.

Chad said the impact with the culvert must’ve caused the car to twist to the extent that the windshield cracked, and the air bags came out.  Jessi remembers hearing the air bags “pop” and she had her arms covering her face and the bags hit her arms.  Chad said his chest is sore so he knows the air bag hit him but he doesn’t even remember it coming out, though he saw that it was out.  It all happened very fast.

There were so many ways they were so lucky!  The state trooper was the nicest guy you could ever meet!  He said that had Chad not tried to straddle that culvert and hit it head on, the car would probably have flipped end over end.  I can hardly even think about what those results might have been.

Here are a few photos I took:

This is the photo Chad took with his phone before the fire department got there.

From far away, as we were going to the accident, we could see the smoke.

Look how close the car really is to the corn field.  I’ll never know why it didn’t catch fire.

Someone had asked if I had any photos of Chad.  This is Chad and Jessi standing on the street.

The tow truck getting ready to haul it away.

The spot where the car was.  The End!  The Mazda 626 is history.  Tomorrow begins Chad’s search for a new vehicle but since he can’t drive to go look at potential vehicles, I guess I’m part of the search too.

I’m so thankful he and Jessi walked away from this and I’m so hopeful he’s learned that taking your eyes off the road for just a second can have catastrophic results.

Thanks everyone for your prayers and words of support.


  1. 1


    My goodness…no luck in this situation….God was in control. They are so blessed to be standing in that road….Oh, I am sure your heart was racing…..

  2. 2

    peggy says

    I am so grateful your boy and his girl are fine! I think we all need to take Oprah’s No Phone zone committment. Why do we (me too) think we need to be so connected? Cell phones are a blessing and a curse. I wish I would put mine in the trunk and turn off bluetooth, but I don’t.

  3. 3


    I don’t know you or your family, except here in blogland, but I found myself tearing up as I read these car crash posts. I think it is the “mom reflex”! I’ve had the ‘Mom, we wrecked the car’ phone call in the past. I truly feel for you all, and please add my gratitude to the whole gratitude pool! So thankful your dear ones are safe!

  4. 4


    Oh, my, what a story! I too am glad you only had to endure minutes of agony until you could get to Chad and Jessi and see that they were fine. Thank goodness they were unhurt and able to get out of the vehicle before it burned up. So, so scary. Wow, it does only take a second for bad things to happen in a vehicle.

  5. 5


    Oh what a fright for you all. So glad to hear the kids are okay . Seeing the condition of the car, it is unbelievable that they wee not hurt!

  6. 7


    Again, thank the Lord that they are both okay!!! I showed the Deputy pictures and he said that taking your eyes off for a second can have terrible results as you all know now. We all do it though. I am always looking at what station is on the radio or glancing to talk to the boys. I took Oprah’s No Cell Phone Challenge. I do not answer or use my phone while I am driving. My middle son answers my calls and texts. Personal secretary!

  7. 8

    Cathy Stoddard says

    Wow Judy,
    Chad & Jessi’s guardian angels were definitely with them today! Praise God!!!
    I have never seen a car look more like toast than that one. I’m beginning to think that my cell phone should go unanswered while I’m driving – going to talk to daughter & husband about that too. Hug your boy and his girl – I know you have already – but do it again for good measure. So glad they were not hurt!

  8. 11


    Thank goodness Chad and Jessi are OK. If one person can learn from this that “phones in the car” are a menace something good will have come from the accident. In England it is against the law to use a mobile phone in the car unless it is “hands free”.

  9. 12


    I once got a call from the daughter that she was in a wreck and even though I knew she was fine (since she made the call), I was petrified until I got to the scene. The phones in the car are a big problem….BUT today’s kids don’t know what it’s like NOT to be “connected” all the time. I am a rarity…my cell phone is always in my purse and turned OFF….I only use it for outgoing calls and a rare, pre-planned incoming call. Like you said, Chad won’t ever be taking his eyes off the road again anytime soon! Thank goodness they are both okay with little more than the “day-after” soreness. It could have been SO much worse………

  10. 13


    I’m so glad that everyone is OK. Cars can be replaced, but those that we hold dear cannot. I couldn’t help but think of all the statistics I’ve seen about driver distraction and Chad’s story is a real life example of how a few seconds of distraction can have serious consequences.

  11. 14

    Melanie says

    So thankful that they are both okay. It obviously could have turned out so differently. Good luck on the car search.

  12. 15


    I’m so glad they are safe. The pictures made me sick and I kept looking at them over and over. Must be a Mom thing.

  13. 16

    Judy C in NC says

    Those pictures are certainly hard to look at. They are, however, such a reminder that people should always keep their eyes on the road. I know Chad was not on the phone at the time – but a lot of our children out there only talk on the phone when they are driving. I have finally had to tell my children that they should call me when they “get home” because I do not want to “hear” the accident. Thank heavens Chad and Jessi are okay. Fishing gear, etc. are replaceable. Good luck on car shopping.

  14. 17


    I am so thankful that Chad and Jessi are OK. It sounds like a terrible experience for them. I hope Chad can find a car that meets his needs within his budget.

  15. 18

    Darlene B says

    So thankful to know that Chad and Jessi are ok. What a terrifying experience for all of you. Just seeing the condition of the car makes you realize what “could have been.” If there are more accidents that have happened in that exact place, maybe something needs to be done about that….

  16. 19


    Boy, oh, boy, they’re lucky. The Ontario government has made it illegal to even TOUCH cell phones or GPS units while you’re driving (or sitting at a stoplight). I wish that was the case everywhere – it is sooo dangerous. I’m glad they were both ok.

  17. 21


    I’m so glad that they weren’t hurt!! I must say that the soreness from the air bags deploying could last up to 3 weeks though. When I was involved in an accident a couple of years ago, I was in pain for just about 3 weeks from just the air bags.

  18. 22


    Thank the Lord Chad and his girlfriend are ok. Having had a son total out one of our vehicles in the middle of the night I know how you feel. It looks like you may be driving the Highlander after all. LOL (Love reading your blog the good and the bad).

  19. 24


    Of course he learned! He will always remember this day and most likely will share it with many a young driver to warn them against distracted driving. It could have been so much worse. I’m sure he knows there was an angel on his shoulder yesterday. I am very glad for everyone’s sake he did what he did and they lived to tell about it. Good luck finding a good used car in 10 days!

  20. 25


    I’m so glad to know that Chad and Jessie are safe and were not knocked out, and they could get out of car and move away from it. This is one of life’s memorable moments that thankfully has a very happy ending.

  21. 26

    Liz says

    I’m glad the Chad and Jessie are ok. I have a few friends that when I ride with them, they drive me nuts since they’ll do things like reach for something in the back seat, change channels, etc. I always tell them to tell me what they want – I’ll get it for them!

    I bet Jessie will now be more assertive in keeping Chad on the road!

  22. 27

    Pam says

    Chad does have a guardian angel who brought him to you and continues to look over him.
    Hugs to you.

  23. 28


    Just popped over to your blog and Wow! So glad the kids are okay and safe. Thank goodness he drove like he did and saved them. All my best to you and yours

  24. 30


    I’m glad Chad and Jessi are okay. What a nightmare that must have been. Hopefully he’ll find a new car and not let this experience deter him from anything.

  25. 31

    lw says

    Thank God they are alright!

    I am concerned that this accident seems to happen in the same spot. It may be a good idea to call the county (or whoever is responsible for that road) and get an engineer out to look at it and see if improvements can be made to prevent the next one.

  26. 35

    Marla says

    Add me to the list of sympathetic moms. My daughter had a wreck on her 21st birthday; not serious but a fender bender doing what else?…texting. I hope she learned a lesson but doubt it. I will make her see these pictures. Hugs…Marla

  27. 36

    Brenda B. says

    You all have been in our prayers. I would say there were alot of angels watching over those kids and keeping those flames out of the corn field. Thank God everyone is OK.

  28. 37


    A million thoughts are racing through my mind, my stomach is churning and my heart is racing just looking at these photos. I am so thankful that Chad and Jessie are OK. Nothing else matters. I am hugging you hard right now….one Mom to another.

  29. 38

    carol c says

    thanks Judy, first time i heard it i was one of who wanted more details.
    i am supremely happy THEY were not hurt