What an interesting day!
We set off in the car around 05:40 after waking at 05:00. The plan was to take a 10 hour drive to Byron Bay…It certainly didn’t plan out that way!
We grabbed a Mcdonalds breakfast and made sure we hit the road again!
We were driving perfectly, all being good, admiring the awesome hills around us and next thing we know, a couple of hours in, a large bang happens, a puff of smoke appears from the engine and we see something in our mirrors bouncing down the M1 smoking!
That certainly didn’t seem good!
We were hoping (though knowing full well that it wasn’t) it was a tyre, but low and behold, we got out and saw oil everywhere and then Kim decided to run down the motorway (on the shoulder) to look at what fell off and noticed that the part that had come out was the oil tank…The whole oil tank!
After phoning around to about 6 different companies, we managed to get a company to come and tow us. Whilst all of this was happening, we also had to call the fire department as one of our burning fragments from the car had made its way into the central reservation, which in the case of the M1 was all very dry bush, so had promptly started to set on fire! We were later told that it made the news… So that’s good, right?
The highway maintenance guys arrived and put the fire out, followed by the fire department who put copious amounts of dry soil on our large oil spill.
We waited for around an hour or so and then the town truck arrived. We had been informed that the engine was completely destroyed and was irreparable, but we could hope!
We got the tow with the lovely guy to a place called Gosford, which isn’t very far from Sydney so we basically got driven all the way back from where we came from!
When we got there, the very lovely mechanic took a look and confirmed the worst… A part in or near the oil tank had seized and basically exploded and made a hole pushing the oil tank out of the car and smashing up the engine whilst doing so… It was also apparently a small fire, too! We were actually lucky that the car had a firewall, otherwise this story would have been way more serious!
Anyway, we took all of our things out of the car and the mechanic said he would phone the wreckers as it was only repairable by a new engine which was obviously too expensive!
Interestingly, the wreckers didn’t even want it so he called a mate to crush it!
We were then given a small tour of Gosford (it’s a lovely place!) and dropped at the train station by the mechanic. He also then gave us $100 for the car, which helped offset the $275 fee for towing!
We then found out we had to buy tickets for the train online, so we had to do that! The train wasn’t leaving until 16:01 so we left our bags at the station and grabbed a Subway for lunch and some snacks for the journey.
We eventually got on the train and, 10 hours or so later at about 02:30 we got off at a place called ‘Casino’ and took a bus from there to Byron Bay. Luckily the bus was included in our train ticket and was a coach so it was easy.
We then had to walk about 15 minutes to where we are staying and we are now in bed at 05:21 looking forward to getting a few hours sleep, though we did get some in the train!
All fun and games, eh?
– Mr & Mrs Hale