78 Vehicle Accidents

Various people discuss their experiences with accidents.

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Helen / Canada
speakerYes, I have actually. It was just shortly after I got my driver's license. I was driving in a parking lot and I was going through a small intersection and I looked to my left, and there was a car coming towards me and it was actually going a lot faster than I thought, so it basically slammed right into my car. Thankfully neither myself, nor my sister were injured.

Amir / Iran
speakerYeah, I had an accident when I was nine years old - a car accident. I stole a key from my mom and I drove this car although I couldn't reach the pedals. I had to go down and reach the pedal, come up and then look at the window to see where I am going, and I hit the garage of one of my neighbors, and so hard that the door was fallen and I was ... the car was under the garage. That was my accident and it was scary because a few minutes earlier, children were playing there and their mom asked them to wear socks because they were going to a party and as soon as the entered the house this accident happened, so they were screaming, I was screaming. It was scary.

Lindsay / The United States
speakerI have been in an accident one time. I was making a left turn, and the car hit the side of my car. It was coming straight at me. I shouldn't have made the left turn. It was completely my fault, and we had to pull over, and my car was ruined, and the front of their car was ruined, and the police had to come. And I was really shaken up. I was only actually sixteen at the time, and after that I decided to become a very careful driver and I have not been in an accident since.

Paul / England
speakerA serious accident? OK. When I was in Thailand, I rented a motorbike for the day with my girlfriend actually because we were planning to drive to the other side of the island to do some diving. I don't know if you've been to Thailand but on the ... the roads were ... they were not very safe and I started to slide and then I tried to control the bike, but unfortunately it slipped from under me and we both fell off the bike.

Matthew / England
speakerYes, I have. When I was sixteen, I was riding my bicycle home from work somebody else pulled their bicycle in front of me and I hit them and flew over their handle bars and broke my arm.

Shalini / Canada
speakerYes, I have actually. It was a car accident and it wasn't very serious but it was supposedly my fault, although I tend to disagree, but I was pulling out into a busy street and I didn't see that there were two lanes, and yeah, the car came up and hit me on the side. That was it. It was my fault. I had to pay.

Learn Vocabulary from the Lessons

than I thought


It was going faster than I thought.

When something is different than we expected, we say it was different 'than I thought'.  Notice the following:

  1. Our trip to South America was different than we thought.
  2. Studying abroad was different than I thought.

slammed into


It slammed right into my car.

When we 'slam into' something, that means we hit it with a lot of power or speed.  Notice the following:

  1. The race car slammed into the wall.
  2. The hijacked plane slammed into the building.

my fault


It was completely my fault.

When we are responsible for something bad that has happened, we say it is 'my fault.'  Notice the following:

  1. It's my fault we missed the train.
  2. Sorry, it's my fault.

shaken up


I was really shaken up.

Someone who is 'shaken up' is shocked, scared or slightly injured by something that has happened to them.  Notice the following:

  1. He was a bit shaken up, but OK.
  2. It's natural to be shaken up after an accident.

pulled in front of


Somebody pulled in front of me.

When a car unexpectedly moves in front of us, we say it 'pulled in front of me'.  Notice the following:

  1. He pulled in front of me without signaling.
  2. A car suddenly pulled in front of me.
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Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
I thought • slammed into • his fault
shaken up • pull in
  1. Driving is really difficult here. People will just front of you without looking.
  2. After he crashed his motorcycle he was really .
  3. He was running so fast to get the ball that he couldn't stop and he the fence.
  4. Living with her is very different than it would be.
  5. It's we missed the plane because he got lost on the way to the airport.