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Hit by a car for the first time.

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Hit by a car for the first time.

Old 10-09-13, 10:41 PM
  #1  
Stratman351
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Hit by a car for the first time.

Happened last Saturday. I was riding down the road, approaching the entrance/exit to a gas station when a teen driver came flying out without stopping to look for traffic on the road I was on. I'd - reflexively - already begun to slow out of caution, but she was going so fast that I couldn't brake quickly enough to avoid a crash. I swerved away from her car toward the the center of the road, but she still hit me and I went flying, landing on my side (mostly my hip). She jumped out of the car still clutching her cellphone, which was a pretty clear indicator of what she was doing before she hit me.

She was shaking uncontrollably as she retrieved and handed my sunglasses to me, sobbing "I didn't see you...I didn't see you...I didn't see you..." It was pretty obvious that she didn't see me because 1) she didn't stop to look, and; 2) she was almost certainly texting on her phone while exiting the station.

A few people rushed over immediately and offered to call 911, but despite being rattled I pretty quickly realized I wasn't seriously hurt. Once I was sure I was okay, I waved them off, as I didn't see any point to getting the teen girl in trouble (she was so shaken, I wanted badly to assume she'd learned her lesson, and I have teen kids of my own and wanted to be empathetic despite the fact that mine know better than to not stop while exiting a parking lot or similar, or to text while driving).

Once I got myself composed, I was going to finish my ride, but after about 50 yards I realized she'd knocked my front wheel out of true, so I hobbled the two miles home with the pads scraping the rims. There was no other damage, and I trued my wheel the next day and rode 40 miles.

Still, it was a bit unnerving, and I'm still wondering if I should have listened to the bystanders who came to my aid and called the police, as they suggested.

Interested in hearing about similar experiences.

Oh, and I now have a bruise about eight inches long extending from my right hip to the side of my right knee that is almost as purple as a glass of cabernet. It's pretty sore, too.

Who else has been hit by a car?
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Old 10-09-13, 11:03 PM
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I would have waited for the cops, but when you've just been through something like that, you don't think clearly. I was hit, in about the same way, when I was a teenager. The car tried to run, but witnesses stopped the car. I was a bit jangled and wasn't thinking clearly and, like you, waved them off and said I was ok. I was scraped up and my bike had some damage, but I didn't realize it at the time.

I think it's best to wait for the cops, because immediately after an accident like this, one can't sort out the situation properly.

Hope you get better soon!!
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Old 10-09-13, 11:15 PM
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Originally Posted by 2 wheeler View Post
I would have waited for the cops, but when you've just been through something like that, you don't think clearly. I was hit, in about the same way, when I was a teenager. The car tried to run, but witnesses stopped the car. I was a bit jangled and wasn't thinking clearly and, like you, waved them off and said I was ok. I was scraped up and my bike had some damage, but I didn't realize it at the time.

I think it's best to wait for the cops, because immediately after an accident like this, one can't sort out the situation properly.

Hope you get better soon!!
Cops don't come to the scene of a traffic accident unless there's a major injury or major property damage, and I don't think this incident in the OP qualifies. By all means exchange phone numbers, and in this case there were witnesses so get some details for them, but if the worst result was a slightly out of true front wheel, then other than getting the driver to pay for the LBS to fix it, I don't see what else could be done.
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Old 10-09-13, 11:20 PM
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but despite being rattled I pretty quickly realized I wasn't seriously hurt.
I applaud you. If I could award you for being honest I'll send you a trophy and a medal ASAP. I think 9/10 times this would've been (at the minimum) an insurance claim and worse a day @ the court. I really do hope she learns her lesson. She's VERRRRYYYYYYYYYY lucky you're an honest man.

The most I would've asked the teen in this situation would probably be the damages on the bike.
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Old 10-09-13, 11:29 PM
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Persons not held to account are apt to repeat actions. Next time it may not work out so well for somebody else.

The fact that she was unnerved to extent by the "accident" also indicates her unpreparedness for operating a motor vehicle. She doesn't understand her responsibility and the possible consequences therein.

At the very least you should have received her insurance and license info. You may have suffered injuries that you were unaware of at the time. And medical costs are extremely expensive even with good insurance.
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Old 10-09-13, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Leinster View Post
Cops don't come to the scene of a traffic accident unless there's a major injury or major property damage, and I don't think this incident in the OP qualifies.
This may be true for where you ride but not the case in every jurisdiction. The police should be called when you are hit by a motor vehicle. If they only take the report over the phone and give you a case number so be it.
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Old 10-09-13, 11:50 PM
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Originally Posted by mac4095 View Post
This may be true for where you ride but not the case in every jurisdiction. The police should be called when you are hit by a motor vehicle. If they only take the report over the phone and give you a case number so be it.
Yeah, in my 2 car-on-car incidents in California, the cops didn't want to know. They wouldn't even give a case number. "Is everyone standing on their own 2 feet? Are both vehicles driveable? Is nobody blocking the freeway? Our work is done, take the rest of it up with your respective insurance companies."
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Old 10-10-13, 12:01 AM
  #8  
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Car on bike is a pretty different proposition than a minor car on car fender bender. +1 to calling the cops, not to exact revenge on the driver but to get everything properly documented (hello, downstream medical bills) and to ensure that the incident with the driver was flagged. How do you know if you were the first person they'd hit?
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Old 10-10-13, 12:17 AM
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I was hit by a motorist on purpose, with witnesses. The bike was totaled, but it was no real loss since it was my town-beater. The cop who responded was absolutely indifferent to the assault. He said his job was just to make sure insurance and I. D. information was exchanged and that the assault was not his problem, especially since I was able to stick the landing after I flew over the car and thus did not require any medical attention.

With consequences like that, is it any wonder that the worst among us don't see any need to change their driving behavior? (Fortunately, such people are nearly as rare as hen's teeth.)
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Old 10-10-13, 01:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Stratman351 View Post
Happened last Saturday. I was riding down the road, approaching the entrance/exit to a gas station when a teen driver came flying out without stopping to look for traffic on the road I was on. I'd - reflexively - already begun to slow out of caution, but she was going so fast that I couldn't brake quickly enough to avoid a crash. I swerved away from her car toward the the center of the road, but she still hit me and I went flying, landing on my side (mostly my hip). She jumped out of the car still clutching her cellphone, which was a pretty clear indicator of what she was doing before she hit me.

She was shaking uncontrollably as she retrieved and handed my sunglasses to me, sobbing "I didn't see you...I didn't see you...I didn't see you..." It was pretty obvious that she didn't see me because 1) she didn't stop to look, and; 2) she was almost certainly texting on her phone while exiting the station.

A few people rushed over immediately and offered to call 911, but despite being rattled I pretty quickly realized I wasn't seriously hurt. Once I was sure I was okay, I waved them off, as I didn't see any point to getting the teen girl in trouble (she was so shaken, I wanted badly to assume she'd learned her lesson, and I have teen kids of my own and wanted to be empathetic despite the fact that mine know better than to not stop while exiting a parking lot or similar, or to text while driving).

Once I got myself composed, I was going to finish my ride, but after about 50 yards I realized she'd knocked my front wheel out of true, so I hobbled the two miles home with the pads scraping the rims. There was no other damage, and I trued my wheel the next day and rode 40 miles.

Still, it was a bit unnerving, and I'm still wondering if I should have listened to the bystanders who came to my aid and called the police, as they suggested.

Interested in hearing about similar experiences.

Oh, and I now have a bruise about eight inches long extending from my right hip to the side of my right knee that is almost as purple as a glass of cabernet. It's pretty sore, too.

Who else has been hit by a car?
You're nuts not to call it in-- you were "rattled", your body was hurt, your bike was damaged.

Rattled can very easily mean head injury and that's as real as it gets. Your bruise could turn blood clot turn aneurysm and then not documenting the accident would be a huge legal/financial drain on your survivors.

She was insured. Take care of business.

With the ball-busting done- hey, I've got teens myself, and I might've done just what you did. Good on ye for your compassion and GLAD YOU ARE OK!!
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Old 10-10-13, 03:05 AM
  #11  
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I'm in the call the police camp. Whether there is a response or not is irrelevant, the incident was reported. If no response, at least get name/insurance information and witness names. Burn me once-shame on you, burn me twice-shame on me. The event might not have been her first, she might not have been legally driving, she might not ........

Good luck and stay vertical while on the wheels.
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Old 10-10-13, 04:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Leinster View Post
Cops don't come to the scene of a traffic accident unless there's a major injury or major property damage, and I don't think this incident in the OP qualifies. By all means exchange phone numbers, and in this case there were witnesses so get some details for them, but if the worst result was a slightly out of true front wheel, then other than getting the driver to pay for the LBS to fix it, I don't see what else could be done.
I have no idea where you live but would not want to if this is the case. Okay, back to the OP ? at hand.

Not sure what I would have done. I would have gotten the witnesses name and the young lady at least would pay for any damages to my bike! I doubt she intended to really set out that day to run over a cyclist. Bottom line is no matter how many laws are passed to eliminate cell phone use while driving it will never go away. We need to develop a way with car manufacturers, that until you pull over a cell phone is disabled from outgoing calls. I think that can be realistically devised. Then folks would have to pull over to make a call!
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Old 10-10-13, 05:01 AM
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I got hit 4 times. Three times there was damage to the bicycle - I just got bruises.

Drivers stopped, came out, appologized, made sure I was OK. I just asked for money for bicycle repairs (once rack, once forks, several times wheels out of true).

Mistakes can happen to anyone and I didn't think it was nice to give people hard time - they paid for damages, that's it. Didn't waste any time on calling the police, etc.
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Old 10-10-13, 05:23 AM
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"I didn't see you" means either "I didn't look" or "My eyesight is so bad that I shouldn't be driving". Usually the former. I'd have let the police work out which. She'd be unlikely to lose her license, but even more unlikely to do it again.
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Old 10-10-13, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Leinster View Post
Cops don't come to the scene of a traffic accident unless there's a major injury or major property damage, and I don't think this incident in the OP qualifies. By all means exchange phone numbers, and in this case there were witnesses so get some details for them, but if the worst result was a slightly out of true front wheel, then other than getting the driver to pay for the LBS to fix it, I don't see what else could be done.
This has been my experience. A few years ago, a car hit the guy I was riding with. Turned his carbon fiber frame into a dish rag. Fortunately, he only got minor road rash.

We called 911. They said they would send a policeman; an hour later, with still no Cop, we called again, and they said they only send Police to accidents with significant bodily injury, and if he didn't need paramedics, to just file a report.

If the incident is something you're going to pursue with insurance, calling the Police is a good idea, but most places, I wouldn't expect them to dispatch an officer to the scene.
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Old 10-10-13, 06:58 AM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh View Post
This has been my experience. A few years ago, a car hit the guy I was riding with. Turned his carbon fiber frame into a dish rag. Fortunately, he only got minor road rash.

We called 911. They said they would send a policeman; an hour later, with still no Cop, we called again, and they said they only send Police to accidents with significant bodily injury, and if he didn't need paramedics, to just file a report.

If the incident is something you're going to pursue with insurance, calling the Police is a good idea, but most places, I wouldn't expect them to dispatch an officer to the scene.
That's why you tell them that the driver may have some serious injuries by the time they get there.


To the OP,
Congratulations on not beating the crap out of the teen driver. I'm not sure I would have handled it as calmly as you.
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Old 10-10-13, 07:08 AM
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sheesh...
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Old 10-10-13, 07:26 AM
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Let's assume the accident in which a very expensive bike is rendered worthless is deemed not worthy of a police response. Let's say the aggressor ( driver ) denies everything and you are on the hook for a new bike. What options are there? Police don't like to assess blame, shielding the guilty from liability. I'm often stunned how brazenly people will lie. After all of these bad scenarios present themselves what are the options? SOL because some idiot on a cell phone was, in all probability, breaking the law and driving while distracted? One possible answer is to play up the personal injury angle, thereby obligating a police response and report. Kind of like the over the top response to cheap shots in sports, of dramatically exaggerating in order to draw a penalty. One never has the presence of mind after being hit, unfortunately.
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Old 10-10-13, 07:57 AM
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When I was in my twenties and still in school, I routinely rode my bike to rotations at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, in Philly. As I was passing the driveway for the emergency room entrance I was broadsided by a couple in a Lincoln Continental. Somehow I ended up under the car, still attached to my bike with the toe clips and old style slotted cleats. My bike was totaled. The folks who hit me helped me into the emergency room, called my wife (no cell phones yet), and drove my mangled bike back to my apartment. We exchanged info, and I ultimately asked them to pay for my new bike, which they were only too happy to do. The bike that was totaled was Huffy Aerowind, I replaced it with a Univega Nuovo Sport, which I still have today.

To the OP, texting while driving is a ubiquitous problem in our society today, which I fear will only get worse. I truly believe there will need to be some type of technological solution to this problem. I have kids who are in their teens and early twenties, and the call of a text is impossible for them to ignore. We won't be able to count on common sense or legislation to stop the problem. I probably would have called her parents, I know I would appreciate a call if one of my kids were doing something dumb like texting while driving.

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Old 10-10-13, 08:01 AM
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Things to remember about getting police and insurance involved:
Police could assume the cyclist broke traffic code and caused the wreck, regardless of what happened. Police only show for serious injury wrecks because minor wrecks do not generate revenue through citations the way major wrecks do. Most states fund traffic investigations so a minor wreck like this one won't get bankrolled by the state.
The girl driving the car in this case will not lose her license, she'll score points and get to pay more money.
Insurance is not going to give you $5k for a $5k bike, they're going to depreciate to 50% or lower. Then, you get to either waste money on an attorney or just pay out of pocket.

It's best to deal with the matter privately after taking lots of pictures, keep a record of your phone call to police where they suggested they would not come out and make a report, then deal with the dude that hit you.
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Old 10-10-13, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by waters60 View Post
Let's assume the accident in which a very expensive bike is rendered worthless is deemed not worthy of a police response. Let's say the aggressor ( driver ) denies everything and you are on the hook for a new bike. What options are there? Police don't like to assess blame, shielding the guilty from liability. I'm often stunned how brazenly people will lie. After all of these bad scenarios present themselves what are the options? SOL because some idiot on a cell phone was, in all probability, breaking the law and driving while distracted? One possible answer is to play up the personal injury angle, thereby obligating a police response and report. Kind of like the over the top response to cheap shots in sports, of dramatically exaggerating in order to draw a penalty. One never has the presence of mind after being hit, unfortunately.
honestly, in my eyes, this is why you call an ambulance and at least get looked over. I've been in enough accidents/wrecks in cars and on motorcycles to know that frequently your injuries don't become painful until hours later after your adrenaline and etc subside or you're not thinking clearly for numerous reasons. when you get hit by a car while you're on a bike you absolutely should get checked out. if you are OK, at least it is documented.
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Old 10-10-13, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by bonz50 View Post
honestly, in my eyes, this is why you call an ambulance and at least get looked over. I've been in enough accidents/wrecks in cars and on motorcycles to know that frequently your injuries don't become painful until hours later after your adrenaline and etc subside or you're not thinking clearly for numerous reasons. when you get hit by a car while you're on a bike you absolutely should get checked out. if you are OK, at least it is documented.
Unless you're concussed or have broken bones, and ambulance is overkill. If soft tissue injuries flare up later on, then by all means stop by the ER or contact your GP, but a $10,000 ambulance ride (no matter whose insurance covers it) for a banged knee and some road rash isn't productive use of resources.
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Old 10-10-13, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Leinster View Post
Unless you're concussed or have broken bones, and ambulance is overkill. If soft tissue injuries flare up later on, then by all means stop by the ER or contact your GP, but a $10,000 ambulance ride (no matter whose insurance covers it) for a banged knee and some road rash isn't productive use of resources.
didn't say it was productive, many things in today's world are not productive but necessary to CYA for both sides.
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Old 10-10-13, 08:41 AM
  #24  
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I think the OP did the right thing. We all hope the teen learned her lesson from this.

Other than other hand, I had an experience from the other side, as a driver, when I lived in Canada. I think calling a cop is a must because you may be considered as "leaving the scene of an accident". What happened was a teen on a bike came out of nowhere at the an intersection which I had a green light, and hit the rear quarter of my car. I slammed on the brakes, and he actually slid underneath my car behind the passenger side rear wheel, which was quite scary. Then he got out underneath the car, picked up his bike, and rode off. I tried but couldn't catch up to him. I debated about calling the cop, but decided against and left. A hour later, the cops showed up at my house and gave me a ticket for leaving the scene of the accident. Apparently some bystanders called in with license plate number and reported it as an accident.
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Old 10-10-13, 09:31 AM
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Rattled can very easily mean head injury and that's as real as it gets. Your bruise could turn blood clot turn aneurysm and then not documenting the accident would be a huge legal/financial drain on your survivors.


Ditto on the cops calling as a precaution. Friend of my wife was hit by a car and "not hurt". Never got checked out. Two months later he died suddenly in his sleep. Related? Hard to say but he was 44 years old and in excellent health (triathlete, karate) so it was hard not to think the 2 were somehow connected
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