09 July, 2009

It Had to Happen.....

Today was a blackmark day for me. Headed out at 5:00am for my usual circuit with a couple of small hills thrown in- then off to pick up with one of the regular Tuesday/Thursday groups.

This morning they decided to choose a different route due to some local road closures as there is a big motorsport event in town. Given that a large number of the group riders are unfamiliar with the new route, I decided to play it safe and head out on my own circuit with a couple of minor detours.

It was a lovely morning for a ride- about 20C and just a slight breeeze. The moon was still up and cast good light when it emerged from behind the clouds. I had done about 30 km and was only three km from home and I'm cruising along nicely- there's a "T" intersection to my left with a "Give Way" sign for drivers approaching the intersection. I'm about 1/3 through the intersection when a vehicle approaches and the driver takes a cursory glance to the left and then without a touch of the brakes, drives straight into me. I had yelled a warning and tried to evade the impending crash by swinging to my right and halfway into the adjoining lane but it was too late.

People often say that things like this seem to happen in slow motion and this was the case. I saw the right-front headlight and grey bumper heading for and making impact with my left leg. I was then sliding along the bitumen on my left side while my bike flipped onto its right side and skittered ahead of me. Fortunately there was very little traffic on the road as I ended up in the second lane, almost in the median strip.

I managed to get myself off the road, give a once-over for broken bones and exchange details with the driver. I seem to have come out of it quite fortunately. A fair bit of road rash on the left side and back, a few bits of bark missing on my left leg and a left shoulder that is starting to stiffen as I type. It's off to the doc's for a full evaluation this afternoon.

I made my report to the police this morning and await follow up info from them.

As for the bike, it's at the LBS for an inspection/estimate. I know there is damage to the right shifter, saddle, my aero-bars (which I was not using this morning), rear derailleur and cabling. I will be replacing my helmet and my jersey and knicks. The frame will have a complete inspection and I have asked them to unwrap the bars and inspect them closely as well. I recently saw one of our club riders narrowly avoid a major crash when his handlebars failed in a race. He had an accident a week before but hadn't inspected the bars.

I'm sure the driver will be in for a bit of a shock when the estimate comes through. I'm hoping there is no debate with her coverage.

Cheers- ride safe- please.


Ant said...

Ouch! A nasty incident but it could have been so much worse.

Are you a member of Bike QLD (or whoever the State Body is there?) Bike Vic down here will advocate for any member cyclist involved in a vehicle collision - they may be able to help.

Don't take a chance with the bars - having just seen a set of bars snap for no apparent reason, it's just not worth the risk. If they're carbon, just throw them away and replace them.

Glad you're still in one piece.

BoaB said...

Thanks Ant and yes I'm a member of BQ- I'll get in touch with them.

Groover said...

Oh no, I'm so sorry to read this. I hope the doctor check came back with nothing but good news and that you won't have any trouble replacing the broken bike parts. Let us know what the bill came to.

BoaB said...

Hi Groover- no broken bones- just some bruising and bark off in a few spots. I did want to lose a bit more weight but this is probably not how I would choose to do it =8^)
It looked like the repairs were going to come in around $2500.00 but now they can't guarantee that the carbon fibre of the frame has not been compromised so it looks like it's going to be a write off.

Groover said...

You are getting a new bike? Paid by someone else's insurance? That's good news, isn't it? :-)

BoaB said...

Yes Groover- I am getting a new bike. I made the claim through my own insurance. They will settle the claim with me and then they will pursue the driver to recover costs. It is taking a bit longer than I had hoped- I'm sure it seems that way to everyone.
Hopefully back on the road by the end of the week.

Bluenoser said...

Holy sheepshit BoaB I'm up the pole and you do this by the time I get down?? You OK?


BoaB said...

Yeah B, pretty much all healed up now- still waiting for the claim settlement to come through so I can get a new machine. A mate of mine is going to loan me a road bike in the interim. Just going to pick it up this evening so hopefully I'll be back on the road in the morning.
Pretty surreal when it happened- sort of like watching a stand of drillpipe fall across the derrick for the first time. Whoever thought things could bend like that and not break?