UPDATE: Read it in his own words! Relive the horror of the road! Cringe as you hear all the gory details of near death and automotive crunchiness, here at Pharyngula!



Myers, trapped in remote region, unable to blog.

UPDATE: Myers has been picked up from the scene by rescue vehicle dispatched from Morris, and is now en route to Saint Cloud airport. where he will take flight to Michigan. Pharyngula readers await direct word from Myers, who may be able to blog from airport.

i-67393729414e176d9545a5419b9fcaa7-pz_myers_car_wreck.jpg

Approximate Location of Car Wreck
University of Minnesota, Morris, Biology Professor and Science Blogger (Pharyngula) PZ Myers was in a car accident this morning while traveling across a remote prairie region of Minnesota heading for an airport. The wreck was apparently caused by snowy conditions. Myers suffered only minor injuries from flying glass, but his car seems to be totaled. As of this writing, Myers is waiting to be rescued by his wife. Myers has taken refuge in a diner in Glenwood Minnesota. This Glenwood diner, and it would seem likely, other venues in Glenwood, do not have wireless internet connections, so Myers, who has been reporting his plight on his twitter account, has been unable to blog.

There were no major storms in the region at the time of the accident, but several freak snow squalls were reported in the area and can be seen on radar records. From an insurance perspective, this will probably be considered an Act of God. Which is funny.

i-4d881ee5c66c76f90f29912ade473330-pz_car_wreck_reconstruction.jpg

Preliminary artist’s reconstruction of Myers wreck

Myers reports consternation over the cost of replacement of his vehicle, and ennui owing to his disconnection from the internet.

We can only hope that this diner has some kick-ass biscuits and gravy.

The initial tweets:

At about 7:30: pzmyersDisaster. Trying to get to the airport it’s snowing, totaled the car in a crash. Now stranded in Glenwood.

At about 8:20: Yeah, car is totaled-wheels pointing in diff directions. I’m OK, except for little cuts from a broken glass shower.

8:20: Now stuck in a tiny town with no way tothe airport. Waiting for my wife to pick me up…but she has to drive slowly, too.

Glenwood, Minnesota is about 60 miles or so west of Saint Cloud.

Comments

  1. #1 The Science Pundit
    March 25, 2009

    Thank twitter nobody was hurt badly.

  2. #2 elbuho
    March 25, 2009

    Thanks for blogging this, Greg. Anyone know if PZ has a ‘tip box’ somewhere?

  3. #3 Greg Laden
    March 25, 2009

    I will ask about the tip box.

  4. #4 Irene Delse
    March 25, 2009

    Thanks for the updates, Greg. And yay for Twitter!

  5. #5 Ian
    March 25, 2009

    Very glad to hear he’s OK. “Act of God”…does that mean the insurance company will send the bill to all the people who are praying that something bad happens to him?

  6. #6 Steve Ulven
    March 25, 2009

    Glad he’s doing fine, but looks like he needs someone to guest blog for him. How am I going to get through work? You may have to amp up your efforts today, Greg.

  7. #7 elbuho
    March 25, 2009

    I take it your Ebay comment on Twitter is a joke…?

  8. #8 Somite
    March 25, 2009

    My prayers are with you PZ! To Chtulu that is…

  9. #9 MikeMa
    March 25, 2009

    Glad he’s okay. Interesting communication systems we have.

    Love the reconstruction, BTW. Lester Haines at the Register has been doing that sort of thing with playmobil for ages. An example: here. Good fun all round.

  10. #10 davery
    March 25, 2009

    That’s what you get for being a dirty liberal athiest – god has smoten the evil one! Well, his car anyway. Guess his aim was off.

  11. #11 Ben Breuer
    March 25, 2009

    Gute Besserung, und gute, sichere Weiterreise, PZ!

  12. #12 Greg Laden
    March 25, 2009

    I can confirm that PZ had the biscuits and gravy for breakfast.

  13. #13 Freidenker
    March 25, 2009

    UNABLE TO BLOG?

    This is worse than dying!

    [/laf]

    I’m glad the old Peez is okay. Myers cheats death once more!

  14. #14 Sven DiMilo
    March 25, 2009

    How’s the coffee there? Sweet ‘n’ Low or Splenda? Obsessed sycophantic minions NEED TO KNOW

  15. #15 ???
    March 25, 2009

    Revenge of teh frackin’ cracker!

  16. #16 Greg Laden
    March 25, 2009

    OK, checking on coffee…

  17. #17 NewEnglandBob
    March 25, 2009

    Why is there a preliminary artist’s reconstruction of Myers wreck?

    I would think you would get a real artist instead of a preliminary one!

  18. #18 Andrew
    March 25, 2009

    Did his whole life flash before his eyes at the time of the wreck? Or just the RSS feed?

  19. #19 Paul
    March 25, 2009

    Glad to hear that PZ is OK, I guess this means that the cracker fairy is better at taking out planes than cars.

  20. #20 Dan J
    March 25, 2009

    Clearly an act of GOD. unLESS….. it was just an accident.

  21. #21 Ruth
    March 25, 2009

    It was an epic struggle between PZ and the Cracker Fairy. Lets just hope someone got it on tape.

  22. #22 Carlie
    March 25, 2009

    He should have stopped for breakfast before, rather than after, the snow storm.

  23. #23 Kafir
    March 25, 2009

    I’m glad to hear that PZ is ok, but let’s hope that that stain on all things good, gingi edmonds, does not get word of this development. She’ll aim her ‘I told you so’ death ray upon him.

  24. #24 Dan J
    March 25, 2009

    Bill Donohue was seen leaving the scene.

  25. #25 Tulse
    March 25, 2009

    Clearly an act of GOD

    Indeed…just like the plane landing in the Potomac, it’s a MIRACLE he wasn’t injured! Praise the Lord!

  26. #26 b_marples, FCD
    March 25, 2009

    I have seen PZ Myers car. This is not necessarily a bad thing.

  27. #27 tillie
    March 25, 2009

    Myers reports consternation over the cost of replacement of his vehicle

    FUNDRAISER!!!

  28. #28 khan
    March 25, 2009

    “Let’s put on a show.”

  29. #29 Stephanie Z
    March 25, 2009

    khan, I think Billy’s parents have a barn we could use.

  30. #30 El Guerrero del Interfaz
    March 25, 2009

    More worried by his inability to blog and be connected than by the accident. That’s PZ “tout crach√©” (from somebody who, in the same circumstances, checks his bike before himself).

    On another level, I just cannot wait to read the “christian” reactions of the several fundies trolls and creobots that haunts Pharyngula and the “quartier”.

    Besides that, best wishes for him and his recovery. As we say down here: “Lo que no mata, engorda”.

  31. #31 Stu
    March 25, 2009

    Proof positive that God hates cars.

  32. #32 Ken Cope
    March 25, 2009

    If it was PZ that Cracker Gawd was aiming at, and took out the car, that’s not the sort of aim I’d regard as supernatural.

  33. #33 J-Dog
    March 25, 2009

    Has M-Dot checked the road yet for signs of communion wafers strewn about the road? And according to Catholic superstition, I mean “Doctrine”, after Teh Miracle of Transubstantiation, the wafers turn into the Body and Blood Of Jesus Christ, and those blood and guts on the roads are damn slippery…

  34. #34 Dinah
    March 25, 2009

    Glad to hear he’s allright! Hopefully he’s back blogging again soon!

  35. #35 FlameDuck
    March 25, 2009

    I can’t believe Prof. Myers would drive such a POS vehicle. :)

  36. #36 Dave M
    March 25, 2009

    I like that map!

  37. #37 xavier
    March 25, 2009

    Snow? Almost April? Why do people live in this region, what did they do that caused them to be sent there?

  38. #38 James Brennan
    March 25, 2009

    He’s back!

  39. #39 stogoe
    March 25, 2009

    I first saw this in the comments over at The Big P, and I have to say at first I thought it was a bloody-minded troll being an ass.

    But hey, this is the first time I’ve been not-disdainful of twitter. So I guess that’s something.

  40. #40 Monado
    March 25, 2009

    PZ updates:
    * Thanks to the heroic efforts of the indispensable Trophy Wife, I am now at the airport and will make it to Michigan in time! Huzzah! (about 12:30 Minnesota time)
    * Still finding broken glass in strange places. Took off my shoes for airport security, and scattered glittery bits all over the conveyer belt (about 12:35)
    * Things are looking up: snagged an exit row window seat for the plane. (about 13:00 Minnesota time)

    Via PZ’s twitter page

    The airport in question was not the local Glenwood airport, as I initially guessed, but one about 60 miles (100km) further on.

  41. #41 Monado
    March 25, 2009

    Greg, I love that reconstruction! Where did you get it? Who’s the preliminary artist?

  42. #42 freelunch
    March 25, 2009

    Tulse noted:

    Indeed…just like the plane landing in the Potomac, it’s a MIRACLE he wasn’t injured! Praise the Lord!

    Of course the one that landed on the Potomac a number of years ago went right through to the bottom. It was the one that landed on the Hudson that was awesome because, as Sully said, he didn’t waste his time praying.

  43. #43 Greg Laden
    March 25, 2009

    Yea, the glenwood airport, if there is one, is a small plane deal. I’m sure PZ was heading for the Big City: Saint Cloud.

    That photo, to be honest, was the first thing that popped out of google images when I typed in “car wreck”.

  44. #44 ThirtyFiveUp
    March 25, 2009

    Hey, Freelunch, intrepid reporters like Laden do not need no stinking facts.

  45. #45 Ron Hager
    March 25, 2009

    The artists reconstruction brought tears to my eyes and soreness to my tummy. rotflmfao

  46. #46 MikeMa
    March 25, 2009

    ThirtyFiveUp
    At least Potomac was spelled correctly. Many incorrect variations are possible. Hudson is easy by comparison.

  47. #47 Tulse
    March 25, 2009

    Ah, Potomac, Hudson…what’s the diff? ;)

    (Yes, my original geographically-challenged comment was referring to Sully’s “miraculous” landing.)

  48. #48 MikeMa
    March 25, 2009

    Tulse,
    One BIG difference is the rocks. Most places I’ve hiked, biked & camped along the Potomac are rock and shallow.

    ;-)

  49. #49 Jadehawk
    March 25, 2009

    I note a clear lack of Evil White Stuff* in your reconstruction. tsk tsk

    *I actually like the Evil White Stuff. but then, I don’t ever have to drive a car in it.

  50. #50 syferdet
    March 25, 2009

    Xavier,

    How about someone living in Atlanta and will be moving to Minnesota on my own, with no family and only friends there?

    Yes, I’m nuts.

  51. #51 James
    March 25, 2009

    As a small correction, most insurance companies now prefer to use the phrase “Act of Nature” in their policies, as it can be deemed applicable, rather than null and void, to policyholders who hold no conception of “God.”

    Get well soon. :)

  52. #52 'Tis Himself
    March 25, 2009

    Thanks for the map. I’d always wondered where central Minnesota was in relation to the rest of the state.

  53. #53 Randy Owens
    March 25, 2009

    Based on PZ’s description, I don’t think that was snow, AKA “Evil White Stuff”. This sounds like the work of black ice, perhaps with a smattering of snow on it, but it’s the ice that makes things go bad.

  54. #54 Greg Laden
    March 25, 2009

    jadehawk. Preliminary reconstruction. Snow not added yet.

  55. #55 khan
    March 25, 2009

    Ice is evil. There was much of it this winter (SW Ohio). I was a minor casualty (frakked wrist).

  56. #56 Andrew
    March 25, 2009

    I did have a similar experience earlier this year, with the car going for about a block against my will. But there was no truck at the end of the line or any other object to hit. So I did a U-turn and went back the other way just for fun, and eventually after doing this a few times, turned into the driveway I had been missing again and again and again.

    That was black ice.

  57. #57 Jadehawk
    March 26, 2009

    Based on PZ’s description, I don’t think that was snow, AKA “Evil White Stuff”. This sounds like the work of black ice, perhaps with a smattering of snow on it, but it’s the ice that makes things go bad.

    oh, I bet there was snow! unless of course all that stuff just fell over my place and didn’t make it no Minnesota :-p

    Snow? Almost April? Why do people live in this region, what did they do that caused them to be sent there?

    that’s nothing. last year, we had snow all the way through May.

  58. #58 conrac
    March 26, 2009

    I believe it was ice covered with a layer of dusty snow.

  59. #59 toby
    March 26, 2009

    To anyone who has lost a loved one in a road accident the faux-jollity of Greg’s piece may not be very amusing.

    Relieved and delighted that PZ is ok.

    Many others are not so lucky. In particular, we could do without that photograph of bodies draped over a car.

  60. #60 Greg Laden
    March 26, 2009

    Toby, I appreciate what you are saying, but a similar thing could be said in many different contexts about many different things. Yet we continue to have humor and tragedy right next to each other all the time. There is, in the end, very little that I could every say about anything if I accounted for every possible sensibility by keeping silent.

  61. #61 MadScientist
    March 27, 2009

    That artist’s impression is obviously fake – where are the cephalopods? Oh – maybe PZ already cooked and ate ‘em.

    The artist did get one tiny detail wrong though: where’s the ice?

  62. #62 Anonymous
    September 12, 2009

    was there really 6 people that were in the car at the time of the crash or was those dummys because they don’t look real

  63. #63 Danny McLaughlin
    September 24, 2009

    Hey Greg

    How about giving the reconstruction artist (me) some credit for this extremely popular picture that has been on the Flickr website since me and the kids created it in August 2005. Nearly 100,000 sick bastards have viewed it since then!

    :)

  64. #64 Elaine
    September 24, 2009

    Danny, click the caption.

  65. #65 Danny
    September 26, 2009

    Cheers guys!

  66. #66 Richard Smith
    February 18, 2011

    Driving in snowy weather is quite dangerous as the roads are not clearly visible. When the forecast predicts snow, the best way to avoid accidents is to avoid driving at all, at least until the roads have been cleared. However, if you must drive in the snow and ice, it is important to keep certain safety precautions in mind to reduce the risk of accidents.

    If you skid do not attempt to brake; instead steer into the direction of the skid whilst gently releasing the accelerator pedal.
    – Always drive slowly and carefully in particularly cold conditions; even if the road doesn’t look icy there may be black ice on the road’s surface.
    – Leave plenty of distance between you and the car in front. The usual 2 second gap should be changed to at least a 10 second gap in icy conditions.

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