Aug 31 2015
The Břeclav races are close to Brno, on a quiet river, so an ideal place to race also for the less experienced kids. Therefore, our club participated with as many teams and boats as possible. So my new trailer was facing its maiden voyage. I took Friday afternoon off to drive the trailer to Břeclav, and was looking forward to do a quick training on the Dyje river, in the double with Romana.
The plan was to leave Brno at 2pm, arrive in Breclav by 3pm, prepare the boats. Then I would have to join a work related call for an hour, and the training was planned at 5pm. Hopefully, it would also be a little cooler. Temperatures during the day were around 34 C.
The reality was that we left Brno at 3pm, got stuck for an hour in a traffic jam in the highway around Brno (works), and arrived in Breclav at 5pm. Of course I was quite nervous driving the trailer, but everything worked like a charm … until we arrived at the rowing club in Breclav.
The rowing club has 2 areas for temporary boat storage. One area is right where you enter the venue. It’s a big parking lot with a grassy area next to the river bank. I wanted to leave the trailer and boats there. On the other side of the club house there is a big grass field where the kids sleep in tents and more boats and trailers are parked. Our club’s big trailer was already there. It is indeed more handy to have both trailers together, especially since my trailer had the box with seats and the box with race numbers.
To get to that second field you have to turn onto a narrow path between the club house and the river. That’s where my trailer had its first “insurance event”. I started driving towards that path, taking a slight turn left to enter it. I was driving really slowly. Unfortunately, as the trailer swings out during the turn, it’s left fender hit a small Suzuki that was quite unluckily parked next to the club house. Here is a situation sketch. The white arrows roughly indicate my trajectory. I had moved to the left onto the parking lot to make place for other trailers, so the left turn around the building was a bit sharper than if I would have driven on the “road”. The dark car on the Google earth photo is very close to the real position of the Suzuki.
The fender of my trailer completely deformed the plastic back fender/bumper of the Suzuki, even though I stopped immediately when I heard the scraping noise. My trailer’s fender had no damage whatsoever, not even a scratch.
Got out of the car, apologized to the driver of the Suzuki, and we sat down to do the paperwork. My fault of course, even though I personally would never park on that spot on a race weekend, knowing that about 20 trailers would pass there. Also, I don’t understand why they didn’t scream when they were standing next to their car, I was driving slowly and they literally saw the collision coming in slow motion. Well, that’s what we have insurances for.
The paperwork took about 30 minutes. We prepared the boats but I decided to skip the rowing. It was getting too late.