Thursday, July 31, 2008

Day 96: Fredericton to Ottawa

Location: Ottawa, ON
Date: Tues, July 26th

I decided to cancel trips to Campbellton, Miguasha World Heritage Site and Forillon National Park so that I could have a few days in Ottawa to unpack.

I set out at 11 am AST with the goal of beating my 9.5 hour record driving from Fredericton to Ottawa.

The drive was going well, until between Edmundston and Riviere-Du-Loup. I was behind an RV that was passing the transport truck shown below. For some reason this transport driver decided to change lanes, forcing the RV into oncoming traffic. I braked hard, and had to watch as oncoming traffic drove on their shoulder, narrowly avoiding a head-on collision. Everyone was fine, but couldn't help but wonder what the driver of this Cai Logistics transport truck was thinking.

I continued on, and I was making good time, until I blew a tire while driving. I felt two small wobbles, then two big wobbles, and then "bang", the tire blew near Montmagny, Quebec. It's the first time in my life a tire blew while I was driving!

Finally the spare tire I've been carting around for years, would come in handy. I've changed many tires, so I was well prepared... except the car was too low to the ground for me to get my jack under it. I tried everything, including driving over my wooden blocks. Unfortunately it didn't help.

So, I had to use my Rogers road side assistance. I was on hold for a half hour, and then it took a half hour for the service truck to get there. It took him 5 minutes, and then I was on the road again with 1.5 hours lost.

All told, I really lucked out.
- There were no cars around me when the tire blew.
- The rain held off the whole time, but started within a minute of me being back on the road.
- It happened about 100 metres before hitting a speed trap.
- I was 50 feet from a sign saying what km I was at on the highway.
- I found my hub cap.
- I noticed the front tire had lost about 15 lbs of air.

The sun was setting just as I made it through Montreal, so I snapped a photo.

Finally around 10 pm EST, I arrived safe & sound in Ottawa.


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