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Old 05-26-08, 12:51 PM   #1
RoccoNut16v
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First Accident

First off, I haven't been biking for very long. A few months ago, my 87 Volvo crapped out on me, so instead of working on it, I just left it sitting and started riding. I'd been riding for about a month, when a friend offered to sell me his Jamis Aurora for $80, a big step up from the old Mongoose beater I'd been limping around. So after about a month and a half, maybe two, I was enjoying the hell out of my Aurora, living car free, etc.

Cue Thursday, May 1st. Finals weekend! I'd been studying all week, getting ready for a stressful next few days with finals, drill weekend (Army Reserve time), then more finals. Anyway, I woke up early, got my studying out of the way, and after walking around for thirty minutes with everything done, decided to leave early for my 1pm final so I could grab a cup of coffee to chill out a bit before the test. The weather was gorgeous 70's, slight breeze, sorta cloudy, really rare weather for west Texas. It was one of the first great rides I'd had in a few weeks, just one of those natural jaunts. I really can't think of a good way to describe it, but every stroke felt as familiar as a breath.

Anyway, I'm rolling down a two lane, two way street with a bike path. 30mph speed limit, right of way most of the way (intersecting streets stop, not mine). So as I'm riding, out of the corner of my left eye, I see a blur of a truck where I'd expected, and wanted, to see a still image. The...erm...gentleman, didn't really even perform a rolling stop, opting instead to slow to 10mph or so before gunning it. I missed him just barely, but then heard a crash right behind me.

The truck hit a Lincoln Continental traveling right behind me, which fishtailed, and struck my back tire with its right rear quarter panel before poping the curb stopping on the lawn. I straightened up when I heard the crash to keep from hitting the curb, so all I really did was roll (thankfully). I landed correctly, right knee, hip, hand/elbow (ok that wasn't so correct), shoulder, and finally my head. Police were on the scene quickly. The driver of the Lincoln had to be pried out by firefighters and was taken to the hospital immediately. I, presumably because I'm 20 and male, said I was feeling fine to paramedics and refused medical care. Then, as the EMS was giving me a ride home, I got dizzier than all hell (I guess the adrenalin wore off) and figured it might make since to get the head checked. All in all, I ended up with some road rash, a concussion, and some pain in my hand which still hasn't really gone away.

I was pretty cool with it all until I thought about what would have happened had I been a second slower. The Lincoln was totaled, so I could only imagine what I'd have looked like.

Heres a terrible picture of the accident from my cell phone. I was pretty out of it and didn't think to take pictures of any cars. The truck came from the street on the right, and the car is just out of view on the lawn to the left.


The bike:






Injuries:









On my knee, gauze slipped out of the bandage and got stuck in the wound, so that's why it looks moldy.

Anyway, after this one I've decided to invest in a helmet, and encourage anybody pondering doing so to do the same. I consider myself a safe rider, and a safe driver (never had an accident in five years), so it really is only a matter of time before you get hit or go down.

Keep 'em shiny side up!
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Old 05-26-08, 12:59 PM   #2
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Hope you're gettin' a new bike out of it! Is the frame OK? Bent?
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Old 05-26-08, 01:00 PM   #3
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Yikes, sorry to hear that, man. Thank goodness as you said you weren't a second later at the intersection. Hope the concussion isn't too bad, and hope it won't be too long before you're back on the road.
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Old 05-26-08, 02:42 PM   #4
RoccoNut16v
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Bike was totaled. Frame bent just a hair, but it's done. Looks like it's time for the insurance company to buy me a bike.
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Old 05-26-08, 03:02 PM   #5
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Glad you escaped without too much damage to yourself, Rocco.

Very amusing to see the "Off Center Rim Technology" label, on your wheel

Miles
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Old 05-26-08, 09:14 PM   #6
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So what happened to the truck driver? Charged I hope???
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Old 05-27-08, 01:36 AM   #7
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Man, that's a lot of extension cord.
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Old 05-27-08, 02:13 AM   #8
RoccoNut16v
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Concussion faded a week ago. Sorta sucked but it wasn't terrible. It was nice using it as a scapegoat.

I don't really know what happened to the truck driver yet. There's a blood sucker (lawyer) involved though. I figured it made sense with medical bills as high as they are.
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Old 05-27-08, 02:16 AM   #9
RoccoNut16v
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Man, that's a lot of extension cord.
I use it to run kids off the lawn with my weed whacker. Any less and I couldn't catch them.

Nah, I'd just gotten done with lawn work. It's a bit too much cord, but it's better than too little.
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Old 05-27-08, 02:01 PM   #10
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Bike was totaled. Frame bent just a hair, but it's done. Looks like it's time for the insurance company to buy me a bike.
That is one nasty gash on your head. I'm glad you didn't get hurt any worse. Even with a helmet you might still have had a concussion, but at least it should have prevented the gash. Accidents tend to happen with hardly a moments warning. At least the skin will grow back and it sounds like you were able to roll nicely and not hurt any critical parts of your body.

You should have no problem getting a new bike, helmet and any other clothing that was damaged replaced and getting all your medical issues covered. Did you get a copy of the police report? If not get one so and find out how accomodating the driver's insurance carrier is. Since the Lincoln hit you, I would imagine that it is their insurance that would cover you. If you start getting any kind of crap from the insurance company then look into getting a lawyer, but if they are cool and are willing to pay up immdiately then save the money as the lawyer probably won't get you a penny more. Each state is different in how they handle "minor" injuries. In NY state is clearly stipulates what you are entitled to: 100% of any physical items that are damaged, 100% medical costs, 80% lost wages. I Bought my bike the same day and had a check in hand for $1000 in about 14 days, and I never saw any of my medical bills. I consider myself lucky that Hanover did what they were supposed to do and didn't give me any grief. Hopefully you will be lucky likewise.

Happy riding,
André
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Old 05-30-08, 12:11 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by RoccoNut16v View Post
Anyway, after this one I've decided to invest in a helmet, and encourage anybody pondering doing so to do the same. I consider myself a safe rider, and a safe driver (never had an accident in five years), so it really is only a matter of time before you get hit or go down.
I agree. I've been hit 3 times in the last 18 years. I lucked out with the first one (no helmet, no injuries, no bike damage) and vowed to never ride without a helmet again. Bought one the next day. My wife and kids probably wouldn't wear one, but they've never seen me ride without one, so they comply. Better safe than sorry, or dead.
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Old 05-30-08, 12:27 PM   #12
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A lawyer was probably a good idea.

Glad your ok. Sometimes it pays to forget about the "what might have been" and concentrate about the "what was".
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Old 05-30-08, 01:05 PM   #13
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Man! That looks like it was a CLOSE call! Very glad to hear you weren't hurt more!

Be very cautious with the insurance company! We're going through something similar with my wife right now. The bike was declared totaled by the bike shop (like your bike- slight bend in the frame, but it was her front wheel that was taco'd). Now the insurance company wants to depreciate the heck out of the bike (its an '02 or '03 bike, but only has about 2k miles on it.. replacement value is about $2k, they want to give us about $500-600 or so). Luckily we're not in too bad of shape financially, so we bought my wife a new bike, and can take our time fighting for a new bike for her. Absolutely ridiculous.
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Old 06-01-08, 04:28 PM   #14
RoccoNut16v
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Thanks for the support and advice guys!

Looks like I should see a settlement in a week or so. I can't wait, and honestly I'm already thinking about making a short stroll to the LBS down the street. Wish it was for sure so I could run down and get one already. The living room just looks SO empty! ...and walking sucks in comparison to gliding.
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