Have you ever been hit by a car?

Discussion in 'Commuting and Road Safety' started by Beastt, Mar 1, 2004.

  1. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    It seems the thread on getting hit by a car is pretty active but I thought it might be nice to get an idea of how many, or what percentage of riders have been hit.
     
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  2. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I've been hit twice. The first time I was riding down the side of a highway, (at night and without lights - I know! I know!). I approached a lit intersection and a car was waiting to turn left across my path. Since I was under the street lights and the driver's headlights had to swing across me, surely there wouldn't be a problem, right? (Silly thought, I know.) He hit me broadside but I managed to cut a sharp right to delay impact. His bumper caught my leg and stuffed it into the seat tube. The wheels were taco'ed, frame bent and numerous other parts damaged, broken or bent. I had some abrasions, scrapes and bruises. The driver was terribly apologetic and gave me a ride to my job. About two weeks later I had a check from him for the cost of the bike. I dug into my savings and more than doubled that amount and purchased a significant upgrade. I credit the new bike (a nice little aluminum frame hardtail), for really sparking my interest in more serious cycling and I still have it.

    The second time was about 3-years into riding the road. I was coming down a highway, (about 25 mph/40 kph), in full daylight when I noticed a pickup stopped at a side street to let traffic clear. I came forward into the drops and touched my fingers to the brake levers... just in case. A car travelling down the same direction I was headed and about a hundred yards or so in front of me passed the waiting motorist and then he proceeded from the stop sign. I began feathering the brakes still thinking he was going to make an unsignalled left turn. By the time he'd passed the point of turning left into a traffic lane, I was on the brakes fully and came oh so close to getting completely stopped. I let the bike go sideways over the last few feet to avoid hitting him head on and to give myself that last foot or two but it wasn't enough. I heard the loud *pop* from my rear wheel as we made contact and felt the wheel of his truck crunch into my ankle. At the point of contact the back of the bike had actually swung past 90° to my direction of travel and I wasn't able to see exactly where the pickup was.

    My rear wheel, (Ksyrium Elite), looked like it had been put into a shredder. Every single spoke had been ripped from the hub and the rim completely mangled and cut clean through. My front wheel was bent, carbon fiber fork snapped off just below the steering tube and my Dura-Ace crankset broken at the spider with both chainrings bent. The worst news was that the rear triangle of the frame had been bent 8mms. I had a devil of a time finding a replacement frame but eventually found a guy in California with two of them. I bought them both, (not available in the states anymore). The driver's insurance came through and 3 months later, I had both a new Dura-Ace equipped, road bike which I paid for, (to have something to ride in the mean time), and the bike he hit repaired which was paid for by his insurance company, ($2500). I obtained a police report before leaving the scene which made getting the claim settled that much easier and I dug a bit further into my pocket to upgrade my wheelset, (Ksyrium SLs), in the process. My ankle was only scraped and I never went completely to the pavement. I stopped on my feet and palms over my poor mangled bike.
     
  3. keydates

    keydates New Member

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    Seems like drivers around here are pretty respectful of bikers...although there are always the jackass screamers. Anyway, I was even more amateur than I am now, and I ran into a car. Bike was essentially totaled, I was basically fine. Just a little bruised ego, I suppose.
     
  4. tacomee

    tacomee New Member

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    I've been hit twice--- but that's over 20+ years and gosh, 80,000+ miles.

    First time I have no idea what happened. I got wacked form behind and some nice motorists stopped to see if I was dead. The driver kept going and of course was never caught. My bike was totaled and I broke my arm, messed up my back and neck, had tons of road rash and sprained my ankle-- the sprain ended up taking longer to heal than everything else.

    My helment was complete destroyed and my doctors said that I hadn't been wearing it I would have died-- I'm a big believer in wearing your helment now.

    The second time was just last month-- I was riding in a bike lane and an old pickup came along side me. I slowed up to let them pass and the next thing I knew I was down. The guys in the truck stopped, got out, laughed and drove off. I'm pretty sure they were trying to hit me. My bike came though it fine and I got half my face covered in road rash and broke my thumb-- pretty lucky I think.

    I did crack my helment-- not to push anyone's buttons, but please think about always wearing one.
     
  5. ruckscd

    ruckscd New Member

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    twice here in a short two year period. first time was about two weeks after i got my new ride and i was a rookie rookie and was riding on a heavy traffic road and a car ran up on my back tire.

    second time an old lady in the middle of nowhere tennessee clipped me with her mirror and turned my bars into the car making me wreck and get this she stopped looked and drove off
     
  6. Oskar

    Oskar New Member

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    Twice, and 4-5 other very close calls. I was in a bike lane in UT, when some lady thought she owned the road. She turned right into me on purpose, and slamed on her brakes. I hit and bounced off the side of her car.
    The other time a 67 year old lady turned in front of me, coming from the other direction. I went over the trunk, and landed in the middle of the intersection. Bent a steel SLX frame's top tube and down tube, and cracked the fork in 3 places. Yea, I was doing 25+ mph, and she did not see me. Settlement paid for 1/2 my last semester at school, and a new bike(slightly used).
     
  7. flyingdutch

    flyingdutch New Member

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    In over 10 years of commuting. No!
    Never really thought about it, but Im doomed now!!!

    I'll get nailed tonight on the way home for sure...
     
  8. EoinC

    EoinC New Member

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    I managed a pretty good one in my early years of training. It was pissing down with rain and I was in Wallyworld, believing I was at the front of Paris-Roubaix, trying to set a record on the way home. I came flying around a slight downhill right-hander onto Wellington's viaduct (NZ). I had my head down and my eyes half closed with the rain. I didn't quite grasp that all the traffic was banked up with a blocked intersection in front.
    Full pelt up the arse of a stationery Volkswagon Beetle. The learner driver inside was just a tad surprised when there were a series of bumps and a lycra-clad idiot came rolling from her roof, down her windscreen, across the bonnet and onto the road in front.
    The bike had a shortened wheelbase and I didn't break my record on the way home.
    Eoin (about time I looked in front) C
     
  9. Cipher

    Cipher New Member

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    Close call, some guy blew a stop sign, apparently didn't see me forcing me to bunny hop a curb into some ones front yard... :mad:
     
  10. jayjay beater

    jayjay beater New Member

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    I've been hit 3 times in memory....once knocked out cold till the next morning, exploded my middle (FU) finger, had to have skin graft (small) to repair it - squashed it between the handle bar and the pavement.
    2nd time - angry drunk driver - flipped him the bird for driving me into the shoulder, he returned and broad sided me into the ditch - scraped pretty badly, but ok (except for that first shower- lots of back scraping). Car saw it happen, chased him down - got plate number - the jerk was under suspension for same kind of thing, no insurance, police filed charges, he got 8 months in prison. My wrecked bike was my problem, as he had no insurance and was a bum with no money. Not worth sueing him according to my lawyers.
    3rd time - at a red light, car didn't put blinker on, turned into me, jammed me under the front of his car. Ripped my ass pretty good, bent my wheels. Stupid Quebec french idiot in a Hyundai Pony, his lights were probably all burnt anyways. I kicked a huge dent in his car and told him to get lost, my ass was so sore and I was so pissed.
     
  11. Allister

    Allister New Member

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    I've been hit a few times, and done the hitting a few times. Can I vote twice?
     
  12. mjw_byrne

    mjw_byrne New Member

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    Only once, thankfully - car was driving alongside and just ahead of me and it just pulled over to the side of the road and slowed down a lot faster than I could hope to. I kind of ended up scraping alongside it, didn't fall off and there was no real damage (except perhaps to the car's paintwork) so I shouted at them and rode off.
     
  13. crankthebigring

    crankthebigring New Member

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    I have a friend that has been hit twice - once by a guy who thought he was a mailbox. I didn't know mailboxes moved, had bright glowing colors on them, and weighed 275lbs.

    Crank
     
  14. crankthebigring

    crankthebigring New Member

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    I did have a close call a couple of years ago...I was out for a morning traning ride. I ran down to the end of a country road to get in an extra 3 miles and was starting back towards home. On my right was a dairy farm. A milk truck was comming towards me and wanted to turn left into the dairy farm. He saw me, head light, flashing lights, reflective triangle and decided to left me go on by the driveway. Now keep in mind he has his left turn signal on. There was an impatient driver behind him that decided he was go to pass the milk truck with the left turn signal on, which he did and now found himself with me on a bik in front of him...I went of the road and in the ditch to prevent myself from a more serious injury. The guy in the milk truck rolls down his window and says...guess that guy was in a hurry...

    It pays to keep a heads up on your surroundings...

    anyone want to talk about dogs...*grin*
     
  15. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    Well so far I guess the good news is that more people haven't been hit than have been and those who have been hit more than once are fewer in number than those who have been hit only once. (Yes, once would have been enough). I've been hit twice and both times I was fortunate enough to have the drivers stop and take financial responsibility. The last time, ( and I hope it stays the last time), I was very lucky to be able to find a matching replacement frame, (2 of them actually... just in case). I changed my normal route to one with a wider shoulder and fewer intersections. Good luck to all those who have voted and I hope none of you will need to vote again.

    As of May 29, 2004

    Yes, once = 14
    Yes, more than once = 11
    Yes, five times or more = 0
    No, Never = 23
    No, but I've hit a car = 4


    ;)
     
  16. davlbrown

    davlbrown New Member

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    What rear view mirror system is best?

    I commute and have ridden roads for years in redneck America. Had a can of fruit cocktail thrown at me once. Fitting tribute I guess. Smart choice since a pack of Winston's has minimal impact.

    I'd like to know the best rear view mirror system so I can tell what's coming at me and train my rear machine gun mount appropriately.





     
  17. johnfward

    johnfward New Member

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    Grazed by a Mercedes but didn't go down. Worse luck on a motorcycle. In the late 80's, I was headed down a gentle grade at about 40 MPH in when a Ford Pinto pulled out of a KMart in front of me. Laid the bike down 'cause the other option was to t-bone the Pinto and I lose that one big time. Trashed my left elbow and thumb on right hand, but fully recovered in about 11 months. Also had some road rash on my chin when I slammed my head into the pavement -- that was the only part the helmet and face shield didn't cover -- healed in a matter of days. Don't ride motorcycles any more, but bike 30 miles round trip to work every chance I get -- with a helmet.
     
  18. stumprofig

    stumprofig New Member

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    I was cruising down 2nd Avenue in NYC, which despite being a 'bike route' has a ton of buses. Went to the left of one of them at a traffic light, and a guy in a green compact was accelerating to the light, as some are wont to do. Slight panic set in as foot by foot he closed the gap between the bus and I. My shoulder hit the car from the side and I flew off, landing on my elbow and hands. Luckily the light ahead was red and the taxis behind me saw my sprawled out form and didn't run me over.

    The guy who hit me was nice enough to pull over a block ahead. I got back on my bike and rode up to him. He spoke very little English, and he and his worried passengers took turns explaining how all they heard was a 'bump, bump, bump.'
     
  19. jcjordan

    jcjordan New Member

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    Been hit just once and just after buying a new bike and jersey.

    Was doing about 35km/hr in a 50 zone when a comodore sedan whipped past me doing about 70+. He then decided to jam on the breaks and do a left hand turn right in front of me. Tried to do the turn with him as i had no where else to go, but my front wheel slipped on something and down i went. The sad part is i could hear the laughing as they drove off and I didn't get the plate.

    End result was

    gloves and Jersey were wreaked, my helmet had a nice dent (which meant replacement) and some cosmetic damage to the bike.

    The best part was when i turned up at my mates work, i was meeting him to ride home, and he thought i was mad to still want to ride with gravel rash and blood down my leg:rolleyes:

    the upside, got a really cool looking line pattern scar from it:D
     
  20. Beastt

    Beastt New Member

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    I'll not comment on the rearward facing muzzle but as far as mirrors go, I prefer the small mirror that projects from the temple of your glasses. It's not all that stylish but it seems to give an adequate view over your shoulder, is fairly small and seems to stay adjusted better than the helmet mounted variety. Just make sure you really want one before you ride with one because once you've had a taste of knowing what's coming up behind you, it's twice as scary trying to ride while blind to the rear.
     
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