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  • Writer's pictureKirk

Traveling Accidents

Traveling accidents are quite common. Whenever you get out of your element, the risk increases. I expect this is mostly due to the inexperience we have in new environments. Add to that the risks we may take while traveling and taking new adventures.

I posted on one small accident I experienced on one of the islands of the Maldives here:

Similar to that event, I had a much worse experience in the rental car parking lot at the Stockholm, Sweden airport. This one was much more embarrassing.

I had just deplaned on a business trip to Sandarne, Sweden. Sandarne is located about 2 hours by car from Stockholm airport. There are 2 options to travel, by train or car. I typically choose driving myself as I need a vehicle to drive to work each day.

On this trip I went to the counter and rented my car, then proceeded to the car lot. Now, in Europe (and most countries actually) always inspect the car for damage. Other countries outside the USA scrutinize minor damage much more rigorously. I always do a detailed inspection and document damage by camera or video.

That’s exactly what I was doing that morning. I was circling the car in performance of my inspection with my head down. Unfortunately, there was a metal sign in front of the car placed at head level. With head down, I did not see it and ran into it. It stunned me at first, but then I realized I was bleeding. I mean bleeding a lot!

Nothing bleeds like a good head cut. I was bleeding profusely. To the point I could not even see. I had nothing to soak it up with either. So, with no other recourse, I just sat down in the parking lot, hoping a passerby might help.

Soon an employee came to my aid. She helped me dry the blood so I could see and aided me back to the airport. I didn’t know this, but airports have nurses! At least this one did. I never had to leave the airport as the nurse stitched up the wound.

But then I was left with a partially shaved head with hideous wound stitches. And I had to go to meetings with fellow employees I was not really that familiar with at the time. That just added to the embarrassment.

What compounded this was each time I met someone new I had to recount the story. Each time I must relive the humility of my clumsiness!

Further exacerbating the situation was this had the potential to be a workplace accident. I never even considered that at the time, but our astute office manager pointed it out to me. Great! Now the potential to advertise this further in the organization and have my name circulated in upper management as likely the only accident case in our engineering department that year (probably even decade).

Luckily it was ruled later not to be a recordable incident, due to some creative EHS moves, but my name had already been circulated as the fool who can’t walk and inspect at the same time. There went my bid for future CEO!

Anyway, I survived the incident with a good story to tell. Well, at least an average one to tell.

I actually consider myself lucky to have never endured any serious injury or illness in my travels. As I’ve said before, I don’t carry travel insurance, nor do I even get vaccinated for area diseases anymore. Lucky indeed!

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Roger Wells
Roger Wells
Apr 19
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.



Mike Wells
Mike Wells
Apr 06
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

That is more embarrassing than hurtful. To have to tell the story over many times hurts more than the actual cut. Your not the first or last to do clumsy things

Apr 06
Replying to

Next time I’ll just print out 50 copies of the story and pass out

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