Thursday, October 8, 2009

Commuting crash

Well I was on my way to work on Tuesday morning, having a great ride in on what is normally a quiet ride eastbound and northbound toward the airport, and boom out of nowhere I got hit by another cyclist head on. I did not even see the guy and he was big. Blind bend, followed by narrow wooden bridge, passing runners equals an accident waiting to happen. After screaming in pain and crying for a good 10 minutes, I thought I was fine (albeit in a lot of pain) so I continued to work. Upon getting there I was quickly taken to emergency for what seemed to be a broken forearm and shock. Good news is that my forearm is not broken but really looks broken, a concussion and whiplash.

I am so mad at that commuter. As a runner I would get angry when cyclists pulled out blindly, and now as a commuter on my cross bike (which has a scratch now) I just want to lecture cyclists who do things like this!

I want so badly to race Cyclocross National this weekend. Good news is my head is likely going to be good. My forearm though, I am not certain.


Dallas said...

Aw baba.. that's SO Bad news ! It makes my blood boil when I hear stories like this...
Multi user pathways are not commuter lanes.

rest up. hope you're ok soon.

Thomas said...

Who passes on a blind corner, WTF!

I don't understand why people do things that blatantly endanger the people around them.

Ice that arm and rest up, hopefully you'll be back in no time.

Bruce said...

That is exactly why I avoid the pathways when I commute (where possible), too many idiots who don't understand the rules of the road, failing to yield to the person on your right at a uncontrolled intersection is my biggest beef...

Dennis said...

That's terrible! I hate that path along nose creek because it's mostly narrow and needlessly winds around (with blind corners) and has a lot of mixed traffic. It was built in the 1970s for pedestrians, dog walkers and slow-moving families on bicycles. Unfortunately it's taking Calgary forever to change their mindset from making winding bike paths that go nowhere to developing dedicated bike lanes and bike paths that go efficiently from point a to b. In some cases the city seems to be going backward - the 19 street hill near North Hill mall was recently narrowed and the sidewalk widened that must be shared with pedestrians, kids, dog walkers and other cyclists. Sigh.

RobWoolley said...

Rest up 'Baba. I am glad to hear you're ok.

I've been wondering if there are any cycling advocacy groups in Calgary. Preferably not the Critical Mass people (whom I love and respect). Dallas, anything come to mind?

Clarke E said...

Not sure about Critical Mass, sometimes they make a bad name for cyclists from what I hear, although I've never actually been to a meetup so I can't say how the Calgary chapter behaves.

For bike advocacy check out The guy that goes by Ride and posts most of the content seems to be a great advocate of cycling in Calgary. It's also a good site to pick up some tips on winter commuting if anyone wants to brave the winter for the first time (it's so fun to bike in snow at -20C, try it at least once).

Scott said...

Hey guys Matt from your team pointed me hear... bad to hear about teh wreck, I share the sentiment. I got t-boned by a cop this AM all fine but for a few scratches on the bike. In regards to Bike Advocacy check out

Kyle Marcotte said...

Glad to hear you are on the road to recovery.

I got cut off by another cyclist back in June and cracked some ribs. Very painful.

Similar thing where the other rider just wasn't paying attention. It took a good 6 weeks to heal.

RobLukacs said...

Hope you are OK Baba! It's disappointing when commuters like that make the cycling community look like a bunch of idiots. Maybe our club could do something about that? Have a "Commute Safe" day sponsored by ST (good publicity, too).

I left a shoulder imprint in a guys truck door last summer when he turned into me at a light...he took off but apparently it looked pretty cool. There were 3 or 4 cars behind me that held back from saying "dude, that was awesome!!" and instead asked if I was ok. No broken bones or bike, but it doesn't have to happen to cyclists as often as it does.

Dallas said...

In response to Wooley, yes Bike Calgary has very good leads for information and the possibility for advocacy. Sean Carter is one person I would recommend for asking questions about such IE:.

City Hall actually has several staff allocated for the specific purpose of bicycle infrastructure and development. Check the City's website for further info and contacts.

Personally, I believe advocacy also starts with you, and us. That includes everything from not running stop signs, running red lights, speeding on the Multi System, and I mean SPEEDING. Passing walkers, grandpa's, dog walkers joggers etc. in an aggressive manner. And simply not riding your bike in Calgary no different than how you drive Deerfoot, So many of us out there act like 'it's our right', and everybody else can shove it. Well how far does that get you in real life ?.
An ounce of consideration goes so far... rather than a ST Club ride I was on earlier this year with several people in Team uniform, running red lights, passing walkers with poor manner, etc etc.
It's all the little things that make a difference.
Recently while riding MTB in Tuscany Coulee and older couple was out there hiking, I actually stopped and got off my bike, and let them pass. The old guy stopped and said " I've been walking these trails for years and you are the very first biker who has actually stopped and let us go by".
The first good impression.

OK, yes there are a few people who jump the fence at the tiger cage, and there are many people who ride without regard on the Multi System. A motto I recall from 'Defensive Driving'...

Ride Defensively.
Times are changing.

RobWoolley said...

I'm with you Dallas. Before we can have any kind of impact with City Officials (especially using the team) we have to ensure we're riding responsibly and following the traffic act. Our kit is distinctive and the team is not difficult to locate.

I believe there is some good work to be done on this topic. I've got some thinking and research to do.

The number of cyclists is only going to increase.

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