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Discussion Starter #1
:( I regret to inform you all that my MINI is no more. Travelling down the A1(M) on Friday evening, doing 70 in the middle lane, girlfriend driving, everything going well when a German registered Mercedes van in the slow lane decide to pull out right into us. We braked hard but with a car on our otherside, the german van nudged the front of the MINI & sent us spinning straight into the central crash barrier at 60-ish mph :(

Thankfully, despite spinning across 2 lanes of a busy road at 5pm on a Friday, no other vehicles hit us. Had that happened that I've no doubt that we'd be in a much worse state than we are now. As it was we were both taken to hospital, me with suspected internal injuries (thankfully unfounded) and my girlfriend with some very nasty airbag-related injuries (not disputing it didn't save her from much worse) and a large cut on her back from broken glass.

I've nothing but admiration for how well the MINI stood up to the impact though. The impact was very heavy and head-on after we seemed to be catapulted into the barrier. No pictures but the front end was completely flattened as you'd expect. However, both doors opened without problem and the roof seemed un-twisted and the windscreen intact, the pedals also stayed where they should. I noticed the gearstick was about 3 inches higher than it should have been though !

After the smoked had settled I'd expected to see the German van and perhaps a few other witnesses stopped in the hard-shoulder. However, not a single person had bothered to stop! And it wasn't until 10 minutes later that a very kindly Scout group stopped their Minibus and gave us first aid. It was a further 10 minutes until the police finally turned up (a very worrying amount of time had we been seriously injured) despite me making the 999 within seconds of the crash.

Anyway, as the van didn't stop, (and even if he didn't notice the impact as it was only slight, then I can't believe he didn't see the ensuing crash in his mirrors) I guess I'm going to have a fight on with my insurers establishing blame.

It's a long-shot I know but if there any MINI2-ers out there who saw something, or know someone who did then I'd be very grateful if they could PM me. I did notice a few MINI's on that stretch of road, perhaps even in convoy, although I think they will have been too far behind.

Sadly, according to the police, even if I'd got the full number of the German van, nothing much could be done because the UK police don't have access to the German vehicle registration database! - I mean what f***ing use is that!! I'm sure the German police would have access to the DVLA computers if I went over there and started pushing people off the Autobahn!

I've now got to wait and see what the insurers decide to do. I'm sure it'll be written off, but I have a new MCS due to be delivered in October, not sure what to do with that now though? - a question I'll pose in a seperate thread.

I also had the presence of mind the get the police to contact MINI Emergency Services rather that my insurers, and so far they seem to be doing an excellent job. Thanks MINI.
 

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...where´s the any-key?
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I'm glad you’re both ok - it sounds like a horrendous crash.:( The Van driver will have felt the impact for sure and someone somewhere must have seen something. I'm amazed the Police haven't took this more seriously as for all the van driver knows he could have left you both for dead. There are cameras along some stretches of the A1 so I don't see why they can't look through old CCTV footage to see if they can spot a white van with a German Reg. There can't be that many of them and they have the time of the accident, so they should be able to estimate the time that he would have passed the cameras.

I wish you both all the best and a speedy recovery.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The police said that there were no cameras on that stretch of the A1, but I hadn't thought that they might be able to estimate the point when it might have passed a stretch with CCTV on it.

When I made the 999 call, almost before we stopped spinning as I had my phone in my had (I was the passenger), I gave a very good description of the van that hit us. It was very battered, perhaps suggesting it was not insured.

The police seemed very laid-back about the whole thing, they said they'd put a call out on their radios or whatever, but that the van could well be out of the country by now and there was nothing they could do anyway.

Thanks for your support anyway :)
 

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Once lost, now found..
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Terrible crash, but glad you are OK!

Hope it is sorted for you soon, but it sounds like you'll have a fight :( :(

Best of luck.
 

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Sorry to hear the news - and I do think its a disgrace that UK Police cant do anything about it even though you had the van reg number - like you say if it were yourself in Germany they'd have probably hung you by now. Guess it takes them to much time to do things like that - probably to busy sat in the back of these speed cam vans stopping grannys for doing 30.1mph in a 30mph zone. I use that strech of road very regulary - will certainly be watching out for German Merc vans in the future.
Hope you get the insurance sorted.
 

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...where´s the any-key?
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Don't they have to clear customs when leaving the country? We're in the age of instant communication so it can't be that hard to ask them to keep a look out. White Merc Van, German Reg, Damaged Rear Quarter, just come from the North, there can’t be that many of them.
 

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my ponies have escaped!!!
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get on to the motorway people (not sure their name) - but nowadays there are cameras everywhere for speeding/maintenance etc - if you act quick they should have video tape of it or before or after the accident - you can watch the vid and pic the runt out
 

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...where´s the any-key?
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scooby212 said:
get on to the motorway people (not sure their name) - but nowadays there are cameras everywhere for speeding/maintenance etc - if you act quick they should have video tape of it or before or after the accident - you can watch the vid and pic the runt out
I thought that was the Police?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks all for your messages, it's very comforting. If there's one good thing that can come out of this, then it's that you can all be assured that you are driving one hell of tough little car! I'm constantly amazed at how well it held together, given the size and speed of impact.

I'll get onto the insurance people tomorrow and see if we can sort out this mess.

Thank you all again :)
 

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It's a real shame about the car BUT at the end of the day both of you are OK - that's the main thing.

Look forward to your new delivery in October, hopefully everything will be sorted by then.

Feline.
 

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JP :-)
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I have to agree with the above comment, cars can be replaced but your life cant

Glad your Ok, I hope you get everything sorted soon
 

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Addicted to Speed!!
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Sorry to hear about this, but at least your both OK.

UK police are to**ers these days! I bet they would have traced the van if it went through a speed camera and there was a fine at the end of it for them! :rolleyes:
 

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Mini Fan
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This is so horrible though. Not just the fact that the MINI is ruined, but the fact that the police have become so apathetic with something like this. I thought the UK had things better in that regard, but it shows that things are becoming like this all over. Suddenly victims are the ones to blame and the perpetrators are the ones that are seen as victims.

Good luck with sorting everything out. It's a shame that it had to come down to that. However, thankfully the both of you are okay and the MINI saved your lives.
 

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Astro
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295 Posts
So sorry to here this, but a least you and your girlfriend are ok, i had a accident with a french lorry 1year ago, he pulled ontop of me spinning me out and sending me flying off the road, my insuracne is still not sorted out, but all i can say is act fast, i dident... i let time go by before trying to sort thigns out (1-2 weeks) if you can get some video/pic evidence or police report saying it was a hit and run and totally was not you fault and then send all this to your insurar you might be ok,

Really hope everything works out for you, as i hate hering people getting hit but forigen veicals

I still cannot pass a lorry and feel happy

Good luck

Alex
 

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MINI Traitor
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4,974 Posts
This is horrible news. I feel for you :(

My first car was written off by someone who kept goiing. Luckily a whitness saw it all and saved my insurance, and licence! :)
 
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