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Came off yesterday (injury pics included)

Discussion in 'Commuting' started by Joe, 19 Mar 2008.

  1. Joe

    Joe Über Member

    On my way in to work...I was zipping down through town on a two lane section of a road which is intersected by single and double laned roads. From what I can gather (it's still pretty hazy) I was doing around 20mph, in primary in the inside lane, coming up to some lights where a two lane (each way) road intersects the one I was on. The lights changed to orange and due to my speed and the fact that I was almost there I carried on through. I remember seeing a silver car turn accross me from the right and then it's all a blank until I'm sitting (I assume in the middle of the road) with my head in my hands listening to someone telling the 999 operator of my condition.

    The ambulance and police arrived in what seemed like seconds but I've no idea how long it was, and I got into the ambulance to get get checked out. I was pretty shaken up but wasn't in any serious pain...just massively spaced out! The policeman locked up my bike, gave me all my bits (pump, computer, pannier etc) and called work for me whilst the ambulance crew were checking me out.
    I was then taken to the hospital where I had more checks done and had my ear glued up before being sent home with my dad who has to keep an eye on me due to it being a head injury.

    Seems I came off reasonably well considering. I have a cauliflower ear which is pretty cut and bruised, a bit of road rash on the shoulder, a sore finger and a killer headachexx( My helmet took the brunt of it and cracked. Must have been a pretty spectacular crash as I have no injuries from the waist down and it appears I landed on my head!

    The driver stopped and was apparently pretty shaken up. I think a fair few people stopped, I definitely recall seeing another cyclist looking down at me, and a big thanks to whoever called 999 and the ambulance crew who were great.

    Yesterday I felt like I'd gone ten rounds with Mike Tyson but today I'm a lot more with it. The bike seems to have come off remarkably well considering I didn't have time to brake and from the last I remember must have gone straight into the side of the car. I've only had a quick look but...the front wheel is slightly out of true and the rear mudguard is broken but the rest appears fine. Surly live up to their name!

    Still not sure exactly where the driver came from. I guess they had been waiting to turn right from the other side of the road I was on and didn't see me, rather than having jumped the reds on the intersecting road but who knows? Anyone know where I stand or what, if anything, I should do next? I've never been in an accident with someone else before! I don't red light jump but it was pretty reckless to squeeze through on the orange, am I at fault as a result? I rarely do it but I was really chilly and travelling pretty fast.


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  2. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    Ouch!

    Looks pretty bad Joe. Glad you're more or less okay though, at least you get a few days curled up on the sofa with plenty of tea and the laptop! :sad:
     
  3. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Location:
    York, UK
    ouch!

    My thought (based on the very little you can remember) is that the oncoming car was waiting to turn right and that perhaps the lights facing it are timed to change just before the lights your way - we have junctions like this in York. Perhaps he (she?) saw light go red for him, assumed they were red the other way and missed seeing you. Which is stupid of him, but if he was worried about being stuck in middle of junction, he may not have been concentrating properly. Or he may have seen an amber and raced to clear it, also not looking properly. Do you have any idea if the car was there waiting to turn as you approached?

    Going through amber is a bit dodgy - it means stop unless it's dangerous to do so (if someone behind might ram you, or I guess if you might skid). I have no idea about the legal aspect, but I suspect it might make a difference.

    Makes me glad I never get up to 20mph to be honest!
     
  4. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    :ohmy:

    Joe, I'm glad you are ok! It sounds like it was very nasty, but that it could have been a lot worse!!

    Take it easy and have a virtual whisky from me!!

    It is difficult to say who was most at fault here. It is reasonable to go through an amber light, if it would unsafe for you to stop (I think). My opinion (an it is just an opinion) is that if you were going under the speed limit and the conditions were ok for you to be travelling at the speed you were and if it would have been dangerous for you to try and stop (remembering that bike brakes are not as efficient so you might only be able to stop after the stop line(possibly in the middle of the junction), then you were ok to proceed.

    One argument against that would be that you should be traveling at a speed that would allow you to stop safely, but 20mph isn't excessive.

    The car driver, irrespective of your fault should have seen you coming and should not have pulled across your path. So there is certainly some fault in the drivers case. They should only proceed when it is safe for them to do so.

    I would suggest, if you are not already a member to join the CTC. They have a helpline that is dedicated to incidents such as these.

    Hope this helps

    P.S. Draw a diagram, it helps a lot!
     
  5. Maz

    Maz Guru

    cant see those pix at work, joe [probably just as well], but glad you're on the mend and the helmet saved you some damage [...now watch this thread turn into a pro/anti-helmet debate].

    had my own bike-off recently now have arm in a cast...cant wait to get back on bike.
     
  6. Pete

    Pete Guest

    Nasty! But glad it seems superficial. I had a head injury (knocked unconscious) over 2 years ago and I don't think it's done anything permanent (apart from possibly an increase in stupidity :o). The way you describe it, doesn't look as if the car was RLJing but was it perhaps already over the stop line waiting for a gap to turn right (as I often do, when driving)? He/she's still in the wrong though, you're entitled to cross at amber if you're going too fast to safely stop before the stop line, and turning drivers must give way.

    This was in Brighton, I take it? Whereabouts?

    Arch, most cyclists, even the slowest, will get up to 20 without even realising it, on a downhill. I'll bet you would do, in Brighton (which is a lot hillier than York).
     
  7. Landslide

    Landslide Rare Migrant

    Location:
    Called to the bar
    Ouchy!

    Get well soon Joe!
     
  8. OP
    OP
    Joe

    Joe Über Member

    Thanks all :ohmy:

    It was an older lady I think, the memory is pretty sketchy. And I have no idea if they were there waiting to turn or if they came through on red/amber from the other direction and turned without seeing me. In general I'm pretty wary of people waiting to turn accros me, and am prepared to take evasive action, but my feeling in this case is that they were already waiting for a gap to turn right and they didn't see me/I didn't notice them until too late.
    It's interesting how I can't remember the actual impact. Is that something that always happens or is it just because I took a wack to the head? I also remember that instead of the usual "heart in mouth followed by swearing to myself" that usually happens when someone pulls out in front of me my only thought was a calm but sarcastic "oh great":biggrin:
    Yeh it was in Brighton. Along Church road, heading from Hove towards Brighton, at the junction where the big Neros cafe is.
     
  9. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Location:
    York, UK
    Oh, downhill, yes, ok, but I didn't read it as downhill unless you mean:

    "I was zipping down through town"

    I have no idea what sort of speed I do generally, not having a computer at the moment, I think maybe 12-15ish on a good day? I don't think I'd want to go much faster on any road with lights that might potentially change, or traffic that might pull out. So I'd probably be braking, even downhill, unless I knew it was a pretty clear road.... I realise this makes me a fuddy duddy old coward, but I rarely have to jam my brakes on day to day.

    Not blaming Joe, just saying I tend to be more cautious.
     
  10. Twenty Inch

    Twenty Inch New Member

    Location:
    Behind a desk
    Completely normal not to remember the impact. I've lost moments, minutes, and once a whole day following big offs. Something to do with the mind protecting itself from trauma.
     
  11. domtyler

    domtyler Über Member

    Assuming that the car waiting to turn at the junction, the car is one hundred percent at fault, a clear case of driving without due care and attention. Otherwise known as a smidsy or someone who just couldn't be arsed to look for anything smaller than a car. Zero technical blame can be layed at Joes feet as he was correctly positioned and didn't jump any lights.

    What he did do wrong, speaking as one road cyclist to another, was to take his eye off the ball going through a junction where you HAVE to expect, and be able to react to, dim witted fuckers like this. If a collision is going to occur it is almost certainly going to happen at a junction of some kind and cyclists must be at a hundred and fifty percent awareness when they are anywhere near one.

    Like I said, I have made several assumptions in this assessment and will happily change it if more details are revealed.
     
  12. Tynan

    Tynan Veteran

    Location:
    e4
    'Assuming that the car waiting to turn at the junction, the car is one hundred percent at fault'

    seconded

    this is a regular near miss for me, people waiting to turn across me

    if you're doing 20mph (not that fast) in a straight line there's effectively piss all you can do about someone that isn't seeing you and is about to pull across you

    and before anyone says airzound, you can;t be firing that off every time someone might pull out

    so, did the helmet prevent more serious injury or make it worse? :ohmy:

    and hard luck fella, take it easy


    and ffs, how is the bike?
     
  13. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    My reply was tring to look at it from a insurance companies point of view. If they can prove that there was anything wrong with Joe's cycling at the time they will claim shared fault. However, I would agree, that as Joe is describing it, and assuming that it would have been unsafe to stop, that the driver is the baddie!
     
  14. OP
    OP
    Joe

    Joe Über Member

    Well, I'm not the artistic type so heres the googlemaps version:

    http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=50.827446,-0.168462&spn=0.000745,0.001824&t=h&z=19

    I'm 95% sure thats the junction (there are so many down that road!). They must have been waiting to turn right in a similar position to the car in the photo. I was travelling from left to right in the inside land and must have hit them part way accross.
     
  15. magnatom

    magnatom Guest

    Looking at the map, that is the only scenario that makes sense. I assume there were witnesses?