I was on my way back from the airport this afternoon after some ground. This lady on my right decides to switch lanes without moving an eye to check and see if anyone was on her left before she made the switch. She quickly merges and, by total instinct I lunged for the horn but I couldn't hit it in time, and I jerked the car to the left to avoid impact, and in doing so, impacted a car to my left and boom.
Luckily it happend like a few hundred yards from a Highway Patrol officer on the shoulder, and me and the girl I struck pulled up next to him. The lady who merged into my lane (and triggered the reaction) sped off. I couldn't grab her plate in time, was too busy controlling the car.
None of us were hurt, thankfully, and the girl I hit was very sweet about it, she was pretty shaken up, understandably, since she didn't see me coming. In retrospect, I'm kicking my self for not just staying in the lane and taking the hit from the merging car instead of taking evasive action like that without the time to look carefully. Happened in a split second, didn't have that much time to process everything. Was total instinct.
Cop said he'll check to see later today if anyone saw what happened (and can support my story), since I couldn't get her license plate. Just one of those crappy situations where I couldn't avoid an accident alltogether. It was either take the hit on my right, or try to avoid it and risk getting hit on the left. I can'tbelieve I jerked to the left. Very stupid, but it was just instinct. It's hard to just watch a car ram into you without being able to do anything about it.
Anyways, has anyone else had something like this happen? Learn from my mistake if not, and unless you're certain the lane is clear, let the other person hit you. It's not worth endangering someone else or letting instinct get the better of you.