I've been pretty lucky over the years: my personal experience with wrecks in general, and road rash in particular, has been fairly limited. There have been a few notable exceptions over the years, though: an invisible pothole in '95 that broke my clavicle; the jogger back in '84 who zigged left, then crossed in front of me as I was passing right; and there was last Tuesday, April 1. I had taken the new-to-us Moulton AM16 to work. I'd bought the bike over Christmas, mostly for my wife, and partly so I could ride it as a travel bike. Gilbert at North Road had set me up with parts so I could swap handlebar/stem/control assemblies back and forth, and this was the first time the bike was on the road with the new gear. Coming off the 14th Street Bridge, the front tire split at the bead with a Bam! and in less than a second the bike cut hard left, leaned over at about a 45 degree angle, and I augered into the pavement at about 15 mph. I was rather surprised - I've had plenty of tires blow, but I've never had a sidewall separation right at the bead in front. The sudden yaw and roll to the left came out of nowhere. And I was surprised, too, at how hard that pavement felt when I slammed down on it. I came down on my left elbow, left shoulder and left knee, and as I learned when I got home, abrasions ranging from some fairly superficial to a few that were moderately deep. Nothing particularly horrifying or fear-factor-make-you-puke, mind, but enough that it would have been rather uncomfortable had we used old-fashioned bandaging materials. Back in 95, vaguely remembering something I'd read in Bicycling magazine, I tried some Spenco Second Skin. This is a gel bandaging material made primarily for burns, and still available for that purpose. It had worked amazingly well on ordinary road rash too, much to my wife's surprise - fast healing, no pain, no scarring. So off she went to the drug store. While there, she found another new bandaging material, this one made specifically for road rash: Johnson & Johnson First Aid Advanced Care "advanced healing adhesive pads". You clean the wound and dry it, warm the pad between your hands for a minute, stick it down on the wound and hold it on for a minute, and then leave it on for "several days". No need to change the dressing; and no need to bandage it on - it's on there, believe me. These bandages are simply marvelous. I have felt absolutely no pain from these abrasions other than washing them off in the shower. Even the doctor I visited this morning (didn't like how it felt when the seatbelt was on my clavicle and I thought I'd check it out - just bruising, kind of like having been punched in the arm and the shoulder and along the back of the neck) was impressed. For better or worse, road rash is a part of the life we have chosen. These things literally take the sting out of it. They're about six bucks for a pack of four, and worth every penny and then some. One other observation: not to start any kind of helmet flame war here, but there was no doubt at all I came down fairly hard on the side of my head. The foam inside the helmet was damaged, and the outer skin of the helmet was scratched up. I felt pretty fuzzy headed for a minute or two after the wreck - I even briefly entertained the thought of lying there on the pavement while I inventoried my parts - but the worst of it was a slight headache, and that was probably from the slam along the back of my neck. I can't claim the helmet saved my life, and I make no statistical observations or generalizations about anybody else's life. However, I will say, I was damned glad I had it on when I hit. Better it got the impact and the scrapes than my head. This may not be meaningful in a statistical sense, but frankly I don't care.