In homage to the “In Russia, the … you” meme.

In a very irritating turn of event, a pedestrian actually hit our car in JP Rizal street in Makati city. The man (whom I suppose is slightly drunk) broke two cardinal and basic rules of crossing the road:

  1. Look out for incoming cars, and
  2. Look at both sides of the road .

We were already traveling at around 40kph since there was no car ahead of us when I suddenly saw a man suddenly darted from the other side of the street to cross to our side. In a split second I saw that his face was glued to the other side and didnt even took a peek at our direction. The distance between him and our car was less than 20 meters so I started slamming the breaks and blaring the horn (mind you the horn of the Toyota Avanza is very loud). I also tried to slowly turn the car to the right side of the road but I was fearful that there would be speeding motorcyles so I couldn’t pull to the side quickly. It was a slow-motion sort of experience where I saw in my peripheral vision the man’s right cheek hitting the window behind me a split second before his body bounced off the middle door and as I was just able to bring the vehicle to a full stop.

I immediately opened the door and saw the man was standing up. His companions already rushed to help and check him out. I am thankful he wasn’t seriously hurt but I would imagine that come tomorrow he will have some bruises on his face and body when the anesthetic properties of alcohol wears off. It took the man a while to slur out “Nakita mo naman akong tumatawid..” (“You already saw me crossing the street…“) to which I irritatedly replied “Oo Manong pero ang lapit at ang bilis ko na. Di ka man lang tumitingin sa mga parating na sasakyan! Mag-ingat ka naman sa pagtawid!” (“Yes but I was already too near and travelling at high speed. You didn’t even check out the incoming cars! [Please] Exercise caution when crossing the street!“). The man’s companions let us go when they were assured that the man wasn’t permanently hurt.

I know that when it comes to accidents like that it will always be the driver of the incoming vehicle who is at fault. Even if the pedestrian is too stupid for their own good to obey basic rules for crossing the street, I still have a responsibility as I was manning a vehicle. I always keep watch of the right side of the road but I didn’t expect a pedestrian to slam me from the other side especially as I was in the outer lane of a 4-lane road.

The experience was my first vehicle accident (not counting this) and strengthened both my dislike for driving, my respect and fear for the deadly nature of a moving vehicle, and that you can’t really avoid an accident. It is too easy to snuff a life when you have at least half-a-ton of moving metal at your disposal. Especially in places wherein pedestrians lack the basic common sense to know basic road safety rules.

In homage to the “In Russia, …” meme: be extra careful when driving in the city because in Manila, the pedestrians accident you.