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Major Milestone...I got hit by car...(long)(13 posts)

Major Milestone...I got hit by car...(long)biknben
Apr 30, 2003 12:31 PM
I finally got my free ride in an ambulance. After riding for over 15 years, I figured I was way overdue.

I was approaching a screwy intersection where the flow of traffic makes a left turn without having to stop or yield. There was a car stopped at a stop sign to my left and another directly in front of me. As I began turning left, the vehicle on my left pulled out. I slammed into the side of the car at about 20-25mph. I had only enough time to reach for a brake and brace myself. I hit the rear passenger side door with my head (helmeted) and left shoulder real hard. Basically, I T-boned a Toyota Rav4.

Now I've read enough horror stories here to know I need a license plate number immediately. I sprung up off the ground and started walking towards the car I hit. The driver had completed the turn and had come to a stop. I got the LP # and I sternly told her to pull over to the side. I was now blocking the car at the other stop sign and kindly, but seriously, told them (couple in car) I needed help and asked them to stay. They were a little shocked but anxious to help. After getting the driver to pull over and a witness, I was relieved. I started back towards my bike, which I'd left laying in the road. Surprisingly, traffic had come to a complete halt and no one showed any impatience while I picked up my stuff off the road. Unfortunately, that's a lot to ask in NJ, the "impatient driver state".

The witness gave me his phone and I called 911. By the time the cop and ambulance showed up, the pains were beginning to start. Because I nailed the side of the car, I just fell to the ground after impact. Just minor scrapes on my elbow and knee. My shoulder began to hurt fast, although I doubted that the collarbone was broken because I was able to move my arm around without keeling over. Since I hit my head, the EMTs were quick to convince me to take a ride in the ambulance. The cop was taking the appropriate action with the driver and witness so I finally began to relax. He asked me some brief questions before I left the scene. I spent a few hours at the hospital getting x-rays and answering questions. No broken bones and no apparent neck injury. I smiled as I received my Percoset (sp?) and was discharged.

Today, I woke up late. The meds allowed me to sleep well. I called in and took the day off. My left knee and shoulder are hurting. The shoulder is really sore. I drove to the police station to retrieve my bike. There, with my bike, I found a note from the officer. He wished me well and explained he issued a summons to the driver. Because there were injuries involved, a court appearance is required and I would have to be there. I was pleasantly surprised that he wrote the summons. I didn't really show any anger towards the driver and just ignored her. I didn't mention a summons and didn't expect that he'd write one. The driver had stopped at the stop sign but just didn't wait until it was clear to proceed.

I immediately took my bike to the LBS and had an estimate written up. $2,400 was the total. I also got the name of an attorney that the LBS manager has used and refers people to. I called him and went over a couple options but it's still early on.

My injuries appear to be minor, at this point. I hope they stay that way. I'll be anxious to get the driver insurance info and contact them. The attorney told me to call him if the Ins. co. isn't cooperative. I'm also waiting to hear from a family member (attorney) who, I hope, will help to persuade the Ins. company to cooperate.

All in all, I think I fared pretty well. Joe friel's plan is gonna be on hold for a little while. I won't be riding that bike but I do have a fixed gear to ride at least. We'll see how things go with the ins. co.
re: Major Milestone...I got hit by car...(long)fliparagon
Apr 30, 2003 12:38 PM
I'm glad to hear your injuries weren't more serious. I guess when trying to look at the bright side, you'll probably end up getting that new bike a little sooner than expected.
Glad you'll be "OK".KG 361
Apr 30, 2003 12:40 PM
You did everything right from what I can tell. I had a similar accident several years ago but didn't trash my bike. I was also too nice (no citation, no lawyer).If it happens again, I won't be so nice.
re: Major Milestone?JL
Apr 30, 2003 12:43 PM
I hope that's a milestone I don't have to accomplish. I've been close, but lucky so far (knock on wood bigtime), and it's not on my list.

Glad to hear your injuries aren't too serious, and you had an officer that knew what he was doing and took the appropriate action. It's also good to hear you have everything under some sort of control, and hopefully you won't suffer any more than necessary in this situation.

I hope you have a speedy recovery and can get back on bike soon.

That story needs work.MR_GRUMPY
Apr 30, 2003 12:45 PM
You need to add some Rednecks and a big fat cop. Sometimes, real life isn't just interesting enough.
Sounds like you'll be out riding by this weekend.
Glad that you're not seriously hurtkjr39
Apr 30, 2003 1:41 PM
And I hope that I do not pass that milestone either...

Get well soon. :)
re: Major Milestone...I got hit by car...(long)humbert
Apr 30, 2003 6:11 PM
It sounds like you dealt well with a tough situation. The driver's auto insurer should pay the $2,400 bike damage no questions asked. The value of your injury is more than your medical expenses. Listen to your lawyer on this. The insurer will likely offer medicals while the real value, even if a minor injury with no permanancy, is likely 5x that amount - a standard measure of value for damages used by insurers. The insurer may try a quick settlement for a lot less than the real value. Don't settle without discussing with your laywer and don't fret that you are somehow abusing the system if you reject the first or third offer.
If you are advised by your doctor that physical therapy will help, or heat treatments or whatever modality, do it.
I hope your injuries are minor and you get back on the bike quick. As a fellow New Jerseyan, I know how nasty things can get out there on our overcrowded roads filled with people not paying attention. Get well.
Also very glad you are okay.Toothpick
May 1, 2003 5:14 AM
I really dread the day...........
Glad to hear your incident wasn't worse.........roadmeister
May 1, 2003 5:49 AM
as it very easily could have been. Count your blessings, and listen to your legal counsel. It may take many months to shake out, but have patience; things should go your way.
Traffic in NJ has gotten progressively worse over the last 20 years, but has become scary over the last 4 to 5. I am
starting to consider relocating out of state...(too many $$ invested to stop riding!) Take the next week real easy and pay attention to your body...if something hurts, get it checked out. Good luck on your repairs/new build, and
be careful out there..........
agree on roads in NJ + glad you're ok!!bicycle268
May 1, 2003 7:30 AM
I live in Morris county and the roads have definitely gotten worse over the years. Riding through the Great Swamp during rush hour used to be an oasis from cars. Now it's like urban warfare (or a duck shoot).

Get well soon!!
Sorry to hear the bad news but glad to hear you're A-OK! (nm)jtferraro
May 1, 2003 7:33 AM
glad you're (relatively) ok; where did this happen?Steve_0
May 1, 2003 8:11 AM
Thanks for the well wishes...biknben
May 1, 2003 1:06 PM
The incident happened on Route 571 in West Windsor, NJ.

I just contacted the driver's Ins. Co. and got the ball rolling. At this point I have to wait to talk to someone else about repair estimate for the bike.