I hate to say it, but I just experienced my first car wreck ever recently. I'm 25, so I guess making it 9 years without any accidents is a decent figure.
I was driving down the highway to work like normal, and it just so happens that it had been raining for about 20 minutes beforehand, and some spots of the road were still pretty slick. Well, after we came around a bend, I noticed that we were about to reach a traffic jam of some kind.
I tried to brake, but the car wouldn't slow down because it was skidding on some sort of slick material, probably oil that hadn't been washed away by the rain yet. Since I wasn't slowing down, I tried to steer to either of the lanes next to me, but the car wasn't getting enough traction and there was nothing to do except wait to hit the car stopped in front of me. I can't tell you how afraid I was in that moment. I thought, "This is it. This is where I'm going to die."
We slammed into this old couple's car from behind, and the next 10 seconds were a confusing mess. I remember the airbags deploying, some sort of dusty material filling up the car, and me making an effort to pull over to the side of the road despite not being able to see anything. After stopping, I realized that my wife had been hit pretty hard by her passenger seat airbag and had the wind knocked out of her. She recovered after a couple minutes, but it was scary as hell.
Once we calmed down and made sure we hadn't broken any bones or anything, we called 911 and got out of the car to speak with the old couple we had hit. They were okay too, and although the nice lady's neck was hurting a bit, she declined to have an ambulance sent.
To make a long story short, my car was totaled. The entire front end was ruined beyond the possibility of repair and we had to call my uncle-in-law, who owns a tow truck. For the next few days, as the insurance company figured out what the car was worth, I had to bum rides from friends and family, which always makes me feel like a mooch.
Today, we got our insurance check. We had actually been thinking about selling the old car (which was a 2001 Chevy Cavalier) anyway, but we never expected to get much for it. It turns out that the check we received was for more than the old car was even worth, so the wreck turned out to be somewhat of a blessing in disguise. We've had our eye on a 2008 Honda Fit, and it looks like we're going to be able to afford the down payment now.
I'm probably going to be scared of driving in the rain for a while, but everything and everyone turned out okay in the end.