Have You Heard The One About The Dead Goat And A Bag Of Fish?

A new survey has lifted the lid on the latest dreadful excuses for accidents given by Britain’s drivers.

The survey covered nearly 37,000 drivers who use company vehicles and asked their bosses two key questions:

1. What is the worst excuse you have ever had for an accident from a driver?

2. What is the oddest thing someone has left in a company car when it has been returned to the company?

Among the worst excuses for accidents was one driver who said: “There were too many mini roundabouts in the road, and I drove into the back of the car on the one that shouldn’t have been there.”  [For the benefit of our many American readers, at Drive and Stay Alive, a mini-roundabout is a tiny ‘rotary’ or ‘traffic circle’ — a painted, white disc maybe 10-12 feet in diameter, on the road surface, which is used at minor, confined intersections but is treated just the same as a regular, more giant rotary.]

Another driver blamed his crash on a ‘bloody woman.’ It later transpired she was in her upstairs bedroom window, getting undressed. The driver had been more preoccupied watching her than the gate pillar on his house, which promptly ripped one side off his Aston Martin DB7. [DSA Editor: I can’t resist commenting on excellent bodywork!]

Other excuses included:

1. The driver said he was impressed with the reversing siren. So much so that he backed into a wall while listening to it

2. I was going the wrong way down a one-way street when I hit a car that was not there when going the other way

3. I didn’t know my foot was still on the accelerator

4. The other car shouldn’t have been in my way

5. I swerved to hit a tree that wasn’t there

6. The horse came out of nowhere and landed on my car.

7. I didn’t see the lamp-post

8. I had to take too many mobile phone calls

9. The car in front had better brakes, so I was unable to compete with the stopping distance and ended up hitting it

10. I don’t know why he put his foot in the way while he was seeing me through the gap

11. I forgot I was in a car park

12. I did not think the train ran on those lines anymore

13. I sneezed

14. The car didn’t come with an instruction manual

15. How could I have known there were metal railings behind the hedge (having reversed through someone’s shrubbery)?

16. I was picking my mobile phone up from the floor of the car


Forgetful drivers leave the oddest things in company-owned cars when they return them to their fleet managers. The most unusual items included:

1. A dead goat
2. A chainsaw
3. Shop dummy  (mannequin)
4. Used nappies (diapers)
5. False teeth
6. Stockings and suspenders (stockings and garter belt)
7. Bulk supply of feminine hygiene products
8. A G-string
9. Condoms
10. Microwave
11. Unopened bag of fish & chips (fish and fries) under the passenger seat of a van (probably about a week old).
12. A boot full of grass cuttings
13. A bale of hay
14. Tampon in the sun visor
15. Box of 12-bore shotgun cartridges

The survey was carried out by Fleet News, the leading newspaper for the company car and van industry in Britain, which revealed these results in April 2004.