Steve’s Red Saturn 1995 – 1995

On Sun­day, Novem­ber 19th 1995 at a few min­utes before 4pm I was dri­ving my girl­friend to the train sta­tion when a 16 year old dri­ver failed to stop for his red light. There was no time what­so­ev­er to react, and his van col­lid­ed with my SC2 at about 35mph. I must have heard a noise or caught some­thing in my periph­er­al vision, because I turned my head in time to see the grill of the van crush­ing the entire dri­ver’s side of my 1995 SC2. This is with­out ques­tion the most ter­ri­fy­ing expe­ri­ence I have had to date.1

Banged-up red 1995 Saturn SC2The Sat­urn spun 360 degrees and end­ed up on the side­walk (I am humbly thank­ful that there was no one on the cor­ner of that inter­sec­tion wait­ing to cross the street) between a tree and a house. The car knocked down a good-size sec­tion of chain-link fence in the process. Both myself and my pas­sen­ger went to the hos­pi­tal and walked out with­in a few hours. I had some torn lig­a­ments in my neck and strained mus­cles in my back; Bren­da had more seri­ous back injuries and was very stiff every­where but these injuries seem at this point to be minor in com­par­i­son to what they could have been.

The dri­ver’s side door was the only thing that came between 3000+ lbs of GMC van and me. If I had been dri­ving my last car (an ’86 Sub­aru) instead of the Sat­urn, I am sure that I would now be dead. As it is, the entire rear and dri­ver’s side win­dows were shat­tered, the dri­ver’s side win­dow right into my face, and I suf­fered min­i­mal abra­sions from the safe­ty glass.

The scene after the cops showed up was like a Sat­urn ad, with more than one police offi­cer express­ing dis­be­lief that the two of us were able to speak con­sid­er­ing the amount of dam­age the car took. One even tried to move me away from the scene as part of his crowd con­trol duties.

I may not have my pret­ty red SC2 any­more, but I am sure that my replace­ment will be anoth­er Sat­urn. Bren­da does think it would be spooky to get anoth­er red one though. My thoughts are run­ning toward the dark green. We’ll see.

More pic­tures of my dear, depart­ed SC2:


The above pic­ture shows very clear­ly the dam­age and the source of the impact. I remem­ber look­ing up to see the grill and one head­light. Appa­rant­ly, the van’s dri­ver’s side head­light would have been adja­cent to my head at time of impact. If you look close­ly, you should be able to make out a dark shape pro­trud­ing from the dri­ver’s side door (I know it’s a bit dif­fi­cult con­sid­er­ing how dark the pho­to is to begin with.) This is a piece of mold­ing from the bumper of the van that hit me! I guess that no one thought it nec­es­sary to put all the parts togeth­er with the vehi­cle they came from.

That's not where the bumper is supposed to be

Below is the acci­dent dia­gram from the police report tak­en by the inves­ti­gat­ing offi­cer on the scene.

Accident Report

  1. Over­ly dra­mat­ic much? —Steve, 20 years lat­er 

7 Replies to “Steve’s Red Saturn 1995 – 1995

  1. Steve, I’m glad to know that


    I’m glad to know that you have con­fi­dence in your Sat­urn, and I am so sor­ry that that hap­pened. I was lucky, my wreck occurred in my ’80 Hon­da Pre­lude which was a junk heap any­way. I don’t know where you live, but the acci­dent was his fault, was­n’t it? It seems to me that he should have to pay for at least part of the dam­age. (Maybe you’re not as vin­dic­tive as I am.) I am so glad that you and your girl­friend are recov­er­ing, and I hope you get well soon.

    Lau­ren ’95 SL2, Light Plum

  2. Thank God you and your

    Thank God you and your girl­friend are OK. I have the exact same car 95 Red SC2. A big deci­sion in buy­ing it was that it might save my life. You proved that I made the Right deci­sion. Thank you for shar­ing your sto­ry with us. Bernie

  3. Steve, Thanks for the info.


    Thanks for the info. It real­ly is *amaz­ing* that these cars han­dle crash­es so well! Thanks be for the space­frame design! Glad you are okay!

    Take care!


  4. Steve, as anoth­er Bren­da I

    Steve, as anoth­er Bren­da I was touched by your note & web page that I went to after read­ing your reply to Ken. I am amazed that you & Bren­da are fine; if it was the Sat­urn or just luck. My hus­band Jer­ry & I trad­ed in a 89 Hon­da Civic on lst July on a ’95 Blue/Black SW1. With dual airbags (Hon­da had none) and much heav­ier car with plen­ty of safe­ty room, I am very con­fi­dent dri­ving my new baby named “Buffer” after the Ring Announc­er for Vegas Box­ing Matches.

    Keep me post­ed on how both are doing & what new “baby” you do pick out. At least we know that Sat­urn are the SAFEST.

    Thought you’d enjoy this: 4 degress, wind­chill of ‑47 & 6″ of snow atop of frozen rain as I was com­ing home from work. There was a police­woman in her Cleve­land PD car stuck in a cul de sac. I parked, ran over & asked her if she need a push. She agreed & had lost her heat in her Cav­a­lier Police Car (Cheap) & I gen­tly got behind her & slow­ly gave it gas & BINGO! Away she went, very appre­cia­tive & fol­lowed me up the street to relieve her­self & have a cup of tea with me. Turns out she also has a Sat­urn SW1 & lives 6 blocks from me. So Sat­urns do get folks togeth­er when you least expect it.

    95 SW1 Blue/Black “Buffer”

  5. Steve, I replied by mistake


    I replied by mis­take to Ken Cross­man (Uni­ver­si­ty of Alber­ta) in reponse to your post in I accessed your WWW site and may I say that I hope that all is well since the Novem­ber acci­dent. It was a hor­rif­ic expe­ri­ence and I am pleased to read that the Sat­urn gave you ade­quate pro­tec­tion. We do not, in gen­er­al, give safe­ty a pri­or­i­ty in our choice of vehi­cles. Colours, fan­cy inte­ri­ors and stere­os, etc. are the main sell­ing fea­tures. Buy­ers should give con­sid­er­a­tion to oth­er fea­tures such as the seat belts and air-bags. I did and thank good­ness I now own a 1995 SL1 with belts and dual air-bags. Your post and your WEB site was a real inspi­ra­tion. I wish you and Bren­da the best at this time of year. Hope her back injuries are in the past. I trust in the Sat­urn prod­uct and you seem to also. I am sure you will both look good in “green”.

    Have a nice Christmas!


    Paul Latour 
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

  6. Hi there, I was searching

    Hi there,

    I was search­ing infos­eek for infor­ma­tion on Sat­urns and came accros your page. I just want­ed to let you know that I’m glad you and your wife are okay. BTW, how are you feel­ing now any­ways? (when was the page writ­ten?) Good, I hope.

    Any­ways, I recent­ly put a deposit on a Sat­urn SL2, and your sto­ry about how the Sat­urn held up like that has helped take away any cocerns I had about Sat­urn cars’ safe­ty. (I had known that they were excep­tion­al­ly safe vehi­cles.) Since it’s the end of the 1996 mod­el year, they have to send a dri­ver out sev­er­al hun­dred miles. And trust me, I don’t mind wait­ing. I test drove it and fell in love instantly!

    I was also won­der­ing if you bought your new car yet.

    While I was at your web site, I looked at your resume and noticed that you were an os/2 “advo­cate.” Well, I just got my OS/2 Mer­lin beta kit yes­ter­day, and was won­der­ing if you knew any­thing about that. I’ve used OS/2 since ver­sion 2.1 and think it’s the best “main­stream” OS on the mar­ket today. I run OS/2 along­side FreeBSD.

    Thanks for listening,


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