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I was driving eastbound on I-94 a few weeks ago. The melted winter spraying up from other vehicles made my windshield incredibly dirty, and I was out of wiper fluid—not that it mattered if I had any, for my wiper had also fallen apart. For the sake of safety, I stopped at a gas station to clean my windshield and top off my gas tank with a few gallons.
As I stood at my car, what happened next seemed to happen in slow motion. There was a van pulling another van on a trailer. It tried to make its way between the pumps alongside my vehicle, but the snow complicated steering through the tight fit. I heard an awful crunch as the trailer smashed into my car. I looked up and made eye contact with a woman a few pumps over—her eyes were wide, and her mouth was in a gasp.
I did not know what to do. I was 251 miles into my 586-mile trip—I thought I would be stranded in the middle of Minnesota for an indefinite period of time, and I had deadlines I needed to make. On the other hand, I was gratefu…

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