Did you know that if you see someone backing out of a parking space, you can totally just slam into them, regardless of whether you had time to stop or not? And it will be entirely their fault unless they can prove that you were speeding. In fact, they can veer out of their lane into oncoming traffic and smash into you and it's still your fault. It's true. That's what ICBC told me this morning.
While in Vancouver, I had the misfortune of being hit by a car in a parking lot. Or that is, the car hit my van as I was backing out. Here's the story: I was backing out of a tight parking spot with a large truck to my left and a small car to my right. I'd stopped (or at the very least was almost completely stopped - my foot was on the brake and my hand was on the gear shift) and a woman in a Nissan pulled through a 4 way stop and tried to veer around me, into oncoming traffic, and missed. She hit the driver's side back of my van with the length of the passenger side of her car. We both jumped out of the vehicles, took a look and then got back in and pulled safely into parking spots to exchange insurance info. As I was getting back in, the driver of the half-ton next to me said, "Did that just happen?!" I said "Yes. She tried to veer around me!" And he replied, "Yeah! Jesus..." Then he got into his truck and drove off. We got out and she said to me, "Are you okay?" I said, "Yes." And then stood there stupidly, shaken. She said, offendedly, "Well, so am I!" and I stopped and said, "Oh my goodness, I'm sorry. I'm just shaken. But you are okay?" She replied, "Yeah, I'm fine." We exchanged info and she left. I stayed where I was and ate a whole bag of chips, because apparently, chips are medicinal. Now you know. The kids were with me. They're fine too. In fact, it was so light, they didn't even know anything had happened. Snap did, of course, but she was fine. All she said was, "Holy shit! Where'd she come from?!" Yeah. Indeed. Here's a copy of what I gave ICBC:
So what the adjuster told me is that there's a difference between the legal obligation to stop and the moral obligation to stop. Seriously. I'm not impressed. This is going to cost a lot of money. And to the truck driver who saw it all and drove away, I hope you do the right thing when ICBC calls you. I may have been shaking, but I got your license plate number. If you tell ICBC that the woman drove around me and came through a 4-way stop then it'll "only" be 50% my fault.
And that's another thing. If it's clear when I look, clear when I go and clear when I'm stopping, and then she barrels through and hits me, it's still half my fault?! Seriously? WTF?
And what really gets me angry is when people, like the idiot who hit me, try to scam the insurance company for money. She's claiming she's hurt. She's also saying I slammed into her, hard. My van is the biggest mess on the planet. If I'd hit her hard, shit would have flown everywhere. I don't think the map even was knocked off the dashboard. The impact didn't even break my tail light. The casing, yes. But the bulbs are fine. So clearly I slammed into her hard. *snerk* But now, I'm getting sued. It's not right.
But apparently the law doesn't give a shit about right. It only gives a shit about legal. :(