Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Hit by a car for Wednesday, 05 September

In what is becoming a tedious regularity, I was hit by a car again this morning. This time it was on Main Avenue just before the lights. I was heading downhill and a car coming the other way pulled into the driveway right in front of me - or more exactly, right into me. Since he didn't even signal I didn't have any chance to react other than hauling on the brakes, and he hit me side on.

Fortunately for me there was a witness walking behind who was trained as a first responder and got everything checked out and called 911 for me. Cliff (the firefighter friend of mine who turned up the last time I was hit) was there with the rest of his team extremely quickly, and he still had all my details from the last time so he was able to co-ordinate calling my wife. I overheard the driver talking, his excuse was that the sun was in his eyes - an impressive achievement since the sun was behind him.

I was put on a back board with a neck brace and taken down to hospital where I had a full set of X-rays - nothing was broken, all the injuries were muscular. After hanging around in emergency for an hour or two refusing hydromorphone (since it does nothing for me except make me sick) I managed to persuade the doctor to let me go, although he insisted on giving me some Tylenol 3 - which I suspect will just end up going back to the drug store to be disposed of.

Now I'm back home I am going to have yet another set of insurance paperwork to fill out. Perhaps I need to hire someone to handle it all for me...


Blogger Jamie said...

Steve, I sometimes think that if you didn't have bad luck, you'd have no luck at all. You should look into writing a column on traffic for the local newspaper up there.

Glad to hear the injuries were just muscular... though I'm sure it doesn't feel good right now. Keep safe up there.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 12:50:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, if it's just a matter of bad luck, then I've had some of the same. In my area, I know it's a combination of things, including roads that weren't designed for anything but four-wheel traffic and drivers who barely know or practice good driving techniques relative to cars and trucks much less bikes.

It's a problem. So much so that I've even found myself uncharacteristically debating whether I should even risk being out on the roads at all. Still haven't made up my mind even while I, like all of us, risk life and limb.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 1:26:00 pm  
Anonymous The Krow said...

that f'ing sucks buddy! I'm glad your not broken thats good. hope your bike is ok too. It's a jungle out there as a commuter. I was almost taken you on my way home this afternoon. Stupid chick on a cell phone not paying attention. Much like the fool that almost hit me pushing my son in a stroller across a crosswalk a few nights ago. I called that one in. Police need to take more intentional action and crack down on this!
Heal God Speed!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 6:05:00 pm  
Blogger Scoutie said...

Oh, Steve! Man, I hope you get better soon. And when you do, buy a giant, flashing light and siren for your helmet, and build roll bars on your bike.

I'm honestly afraid of ever going to Halifax now!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 6:52:00 pm  
Blogger Dan said...

I'm glad you're OK. How's the bike?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 9:32:00 pm  
Blogger Darren J said...

Yes, "I couldn't see anything so I turned." If I see a Nova Scotia license plate over here, I'll be sure to stay far away. (not that I have any more faith in Ontario drivers).

Maybe it's because you're not tall enough. You must be difficult to spot.

Glad you're not so badly hurt. Take care.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 11:03:00 pm  
Blogger Jerome said...

Holy smokes Steve! Glad you weren't hurt.

Is it just that there are so many bad drivers there in Halifax?

Take care buddy.

Thursday, September 06, 2007 12:08:00 am  
Blogger steve said...

Jamie, I tried getting an article posted in the local paper and I ended up being horribly misquoted. I'm not sure if I'd want to risk writing a regular column!

Revrunner, I'm pretty certain the drivers in Halifax are simply incompetent. The test for drivers is far too simplistic, resulting in idiots on the roads. I'm seriously thinking of calling it quits for commuting and just riding my bike for stuff like Farmer's Market visits and recreational riding.

Krow, glad you made out OK. Keep pestering the police. I'm going to start reporting every cellphone using driver - as well as wandering around with a camera for evidence.

Scoutie, the rest of Nova Scotia is great for cyclists. I was in Sackville at the weekend (barely 20km away) and I was able to ride on a major road there and traffic was careful to switch to the other lane to overtake. Halifax, on the other hand, I'd recommend staying away from...

Dan, the bike's a write-off; the forks were forced way back and warped the frame out, it's never going to be ridable again. All I can do is strip it for parts.

Darren, I have a suspicion it may be to do with handlebar width. I saw one cyclist with a flat bar that must have been almost 3 feet across (!) and cars were passing her in the other lane. I've never had problems like this riding my mountain bike, it's almost always been on road bikes with narrower handlebars. Maybe the guy who did the blonde wig study would be interested in it as a followup study...

Jerome, there really are that many bad drivers in Halifax. A motorcyclist was killed this afternoon when he was hit by a car (I'm hoping it wasn't one of our guys from the office). From the Herald article it looks like he was caught by the exact same manoeuvre as me, a vehicle turning left without checking for oncoming traffic. The article ends with a perfect comment:

"One man on a bicycle said it was a bad day to be out riding because it seemed like every motorist was in a hurry"

Thursday, September 06, 2007 7:15:00 pm  
Blogger Dawna said...

Maybe it's time Critical Mass did a ride in the Clayton Park area to get the message across about paying attention to cyclists?

Friday, September 07, 2007 9:53:00 am  
Blogger steve said...

Dawna, I would love to see a Critical Mass run through Clayton Park. Unfortunately I don't think most of the riders would be able to make it from Victoria Park all the way to Clayton Park, especially with the great big hill up to Fairview...

Friday, September 07, 2007 2:51:00 pm  
Blogger Dawna said...

I know this kind of defeats the purpose, but what about getting people up with bikes on bike racks on the bus or (sorry... I know it's wrong...) cars? Enough people downtown with bike racks or hatchbacks?

Friday, September 07, 2007 5:46:00 pm  
Blogger cafiend said...

Not excusing the dipstick who hit you at all, but we all need to remember some odd things about solar glare in this season of low sun angles. Most likely the driver was talking out his ass about the sun in his eyes, BUT: sun from behind can catch the rear-view mirrors, angled specifically to send an image conveniently to the driver's eyes. I have been zapped by it myself when commuting by auto in the winter. It doesn't excuse a blind turn, but riders need to consider that it might affect a driver when we think that driver's vision should be unobstructed.

Monday, September 17, 2007 4:49:00 pm  
Blogger steve said...

Cafiend, the sun was coming from behind the driver on his left hand side. He would have had to have had his mirror situated to watch traffic coming from his left through his rear left passenger's window - certainly a possibility, I suppose, considering how inattentive the rest of his driving was!

Thursday, September 20, 2007 1:58:00 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home