1990 – The First Car Accident

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Tuesday the 13th of March 1990. I was a carefree 17 year old teenager who in recent months had started my first full time job in the bakehouse of one of Australia’s largest supermarket chains. At the time my position was as a packing girl at an in store bakehouse while waiting for a position to become available as an apprentice so that I could embark on my chosen career as a baker.

What I never anticipated that morning as I left for work was that by the end of the day my dream of becoming a baker would be torn away. Even more so, I was completely unaware of the lifelong journey I was about to begin, a journey where pain would become my constant uninvited companion.

Not only would pain become my constant uninvited companion for the rest of my life, but due to the fact I was travelling to work my accident automatically became a Work Cover matter (Work Cover being a Work Place Accident Insurer in Australia)…. Of which I had no option as to whether I wanted Work Cover involved or not, NO option as to whether I sought financial compensation or not.

As a result of the later I would be labeled A Malingerer, A Liar, A Money Hungry Compensation Fraud and learn the harsh realities of how destructive Medical “Professionals” and Lawyers could be toward those requiring their assistance.

I will address my Work Cover Experience in a separate piece, here The Work Cover Experience – Insurance Doctors.

I was driving to work early in the morning, at sometime after 6am. As I approached the intersection of a T Junction, where a side road entered the main road I was driving along, the lights turned amber I came to a stop.

Almost as soon as I had come to the stop a movement caught my eye in the rear vision mirror, I looked up at the mirror and saw a car that was approaching fast, it did not look like it was going to stop.

As the car approached it slammed into the back of my car at approximately 60km/h (37mph) without breaking at all, and shoved my car right through the intersection….. The entire incident occurring within the blink of an eye.

Thankfully the car that had triggered the change of lights at the T junction was the only one waiting to make a turn into the road we were travelling along. By the time the collision occurred the road was completely clear with the exception of myself and the driver who hit me.

The car I was driving was a Pre 1970 Ford Cortina with Low Back Seats.

Having seen the car approach me in the rear vision mirror, naturally, I had tensed up as a result of being able to foresee what was about to occur.

As I watched the other car in the mirror for the briefest moment of time, it struck my car and I was forcibly  jolted back and forth due to the impact, the low back seats giving no support or cessation to the reactive movement of my body.

At which point I felt and heard my neck crack.

1990 - The First Car Accident - Photo 1 - 3072 x 2048
The damage to my “unmissable” Bright Orange Cortina!
1990 - The First Car Accident - Photo 2 - 3072 x 2048
The damage to both sides of the car shows the significant force of the impact.
05 - 1990 - The First Car Accident - Photo 3 - 3072 x 2048
Noting that the cars built in this era were not designed to crumple on impact.

As I got out of the car my neck and shoulders were sore, and as the day progressed my head began to ache unrelentingly with a headache that has only ever dulled and never fully gone away in 28 years.

Impact Summary

  • Hit from behind at 60km/h (37mph) while stationary at red light
  • Low Back Seats
  • Tense upon impact due to seeing accident occur in rear vision mirror

Injuries Sustained

  • Significant Whiplash
  • Constant Headache
  • Neck, Shoulder & Upper Back Pain
  • Lower Back Pain 

Immediately after the accident the middle aged businessman who was driving the other car rushed to see if I was okay and apologised profusely for his lack of attentiveness. (This was back in the days when people actually apologised when they hurt another person by accident, we still had manners and could accept responsibility for our mistakes without fear of being sued or painted as someone with malicious intent.)

The other driver then ushered me into a side street, to clear the main road that was about to hit peak hour.

Mobile phones being nonexistent, we had to knock on a local residents door to ask to use the telephone to call my parents. I could not have asked for a kinder lady to answer her door, she sat me down as we waited for my parents to collect me and handed me a glass of milk to try and alleviate some of the shock so visibly evident.

No ambulance or police were required.

I saw a doctor that same day at my regular clinic who prescribed me Valium (Diazepam) and instructed me to see a physiotherapist.

I then saw a physiotherapist within a 24 hour period and was instructed to wear a foam neck brace, as well as began Ultrasound Therapy.

Once my employer learnt of the accident I was immediately placed in the Work Cover System, along with the associated legal and medical systems .

The lawyer whom I was appointed then initiated consultations with the doctor of their choosing. I found their doctor to be pleasant and easy to converse with so I remained under his care until the legalities of the Work Cover process came to completion during early 1993.

This is where my mistrust of medical professionals began and where it initially became clear to me that many within medical professions are only there to make money.

In short I never recovered physically from this accident. Not only did I not recover physically, the injuries from the accident were nothing compared to the arrogantly intentioned harm that I suffered from those who I trusted to aid my physical recovery.

I will give full details of the “recovery and treatment process” in The Work Cover Experience – Insurance Doctors.

1990 - The First Car Accident - Photo 3 - 2048 x 3072
The 13th of March 1990. Not overly impressed with the day’s events…. Or photos being taken for that matter.

 

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