A Loud Bang and a Breakdown

Mar 08, 2010

RAY: This was from my 'forces of nature' series and it was sent to me by a fellow named Laysheck Pavlovitch.

He writes:

One day last week I left home at the usual time, and began to drive to work. I navigated the side streets without incident and eventually reached the on-ramp of the Interstate. Within about five minutes of leaving my driveway, I was in the flow of traffic doing 75 miles per hour.

All of a sudden I heard this terribly loud bang and I knew at once that my car was undriveable and, as quickly as I could, I pulled off into the breakdown lane. After checking to make sure that I didn't need to go home and change my pants, I looked over my car to figure out what had happened. Within about two minutes I had the car in driveable condition, but I didn't dare go over 40 miles per hour.

At the next exit I got off the highway and drove the back roads to a friend's repair shop. He looked it over, made some notes, and quoted me $2,500 to fix it. The entire quote was for body work. There were no engine or electrical or tire or transmission or other drivetrain problems with the car. But here's the interesting part, my car did not hit anything. It didn't hit another car, or an obstacle in the road, or a pothole. No parts fell off. Moreover my car was not hit by anything. So, the question is, what happened?
RAY: Here's the answer. What happened was the hood flew open. And it damaged the hood, the roof, the A pillars, the fenders, the hinges.

TOM: This has happened to me before and man, it's scary when that hood goes flying up. It's like someone throws a blanket over you.

RAY: You might want to take a nap when that happens. Anyway, do we have a winner?

TOM: Yeah. Our winner this week is Bruce Hull from Wintersville, Ohio. And for having his answer selected at random from among all the correct answers that we got, Bruce gets a 26-dollar gift certificate to the Shameless Commerce Division at cartalk.com. With which he can get a set of Car Talk reusable shopping bags.

RAY: Congratulations, Bruce!

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