So that's what a GSA feels like on your back!

Discussion in 'Face Plant' started by cliffy109, Aug 13, 2010.

  1. cliffy109

    cliffy109 Long timer

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    Spotsylvania, VA
    On Tuesday, August 9th, I was riding home from work. It was a very hot afternoon but traffic wasn’t horrible on I95. I decided to take my favorite “long-cut” home which is about 2 miles out of my way but is one of the best sections of twistie roads I have ever seen.

    I hit a few of the preliminary corners well and was feeling good and alert. I came to the “money section” and was half way through when things went very bad. A car had been coming up the road toward me. He needed to make a U-turn. Instead of a normal U-turn, he passed a driveway on his right, backed into it and pulled back on to the road, going in the same direction as me.

    As I came around a corner and was setting up to make a hard left in the road, I saw the car as he was still in reverse. He dropped into drive without even looking and pulled in front of me. I had two choices. I could run straight into the back of him or hit the gravel. I chose the gravel.

    From there, the front end started oscillating wildly and I think I grabbed the brakes. I high sided off the left side of the bike and hit the ground on my left shoulder. I tumbled to a stop in a sitting position with my knees in front of me.

    At that point, the bike that had been tumbling end over end, caught up with me and slammed into my back, pinning me. My chest was on my knees and the GS Adventure was on my back. The right side pannier hit my left arm. I think the big pannier and the crash bar created a small space for me and likely prevented me from being instantly crushed.

    I couldn’t lift the bike. The driver stopped and came to help. He lifted the bike off and called 911. I laid back and rested on my side, where I stayed until the ambulance arrived.

    I was transported to Spotsylvania’s new hospital and was checked out in the ER. They ran a CT scan and took a bunch of x-rays. They declared that nothing was broken and there were no internal injuries. They discharged me.

    As I sat up to leave, I became dizzy, nauseous and faint. I dry heaved and they became worried. They are not a trauma center so they called Mary Washington hospital to consult with the trauma surgeons. They ordered that I be transferred to them.

    Back to the ambulance. A number of hours after being admitted to the trauma ward, I was given an MRI. That revealed three compression fractures in the L5 7 and 8 vertebrae. It will require no surgery and not even a brace. I got a “comfort brace” to help keep me positioned correctly but it is an option. The injury is considered stable.

    So I’m back home now. My left arm hurts a lot but they assure me its only a deep contusion. My ribs, back and pelvis hurt as well, especially when I stand or bend. Again, I am told its all normal and nothing can be done.

    I know how bad things could have been. I was wearing Olympia Bushwacker pants and jacket. The pants have a good hip pad and I know that saved me from a lot of pain. It also has a very good back protector which likely prevented the bike from snapping my spine. I felt a lot of pressure on my boots (BMW All-Around) and my gloves (BMW Summer 2) stayed on and took some abrasions.

    The helmet is a Nolan N102. There are scuffs on the top and right on the chin guard. The lock held. I flipped the chin up after I laid back.

    The bike could be worse. I’m not sure if its totaled or not. The back rack is bent. The front plastic is messed up. The headlight is smashed and the instrument cluster is knocked completely off. The windshield is busted bad and it looks like there may be damage to the oil cooler. At first glance, the suspension looks to be OK, although that needs to be checked out. The insurance guys will be looking things over.

    In all, it could have been much worse. The other driver was cited and I was not. I will recover and my family is all doing everything possible to help me.

    This was taken by the guy that caused this. My wife hates this one.

    [​IMG]

    Here's another, taken after I was removed.

    [​IMG]

    I don't know if you can see the scuff marks, but they are there on the chin and on the top left. The chin isn't latched in this pic but it did stay during the crash.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    This is the back and shoulder of the jacket. Note there are no tears at all. Were it not cut off by the EMT, it would still be usable after a good cleaning.

    [​IMG]

    The pants didn't rip either but were also cut off.

    [​IMG]
    #1
  2. lineareagle

    lineareagle philomath

    Joined:
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    GTA
    Wow, nasty. So good to hear you survived relatively unscathed from a potentially debilitating get off.

    It is so easy to get lulled into carving up a road and forget that there are real dangers around every bend and in the bushes ready to bring you low.

    I have had my share of scares, fortunately all my accidents have been one man shows. :D

    Is that a good thing?
    #2
  3. PartyOfOne

    PartyOfOne Adventurer

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    H-town, TX
    I'm glad you are OK. I'm also glad the person that caused this does not have any outstanding warrants or he would have been gone leaving you there by your lonesome. Unfortunately, this is one of those "there's nothing you could have done to avoid" accident.
    #3
  4. GillaFunk

    GillaFunk I use profanities

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    Sucks.

    Well, at least your not fookn broken:deal

    Hows the bike?

    When's the lawyer serving the D-Bag driver:fyyff papers?
    #4
  5. madleemark

    madleemark Restless

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    down road awayz
    Thank goodness you survived,Sounds like it could have been much worse,very good you had decent gear on. Hope you get well soon.
    #5
  6. mitch

    mitch Long timer

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    Wow that was bad luck :eek1 at least the driver helped instead of just driving off. I hope that you and the bike will be back on the road again very soon
    #6
  7. Greenflyfarmer

    Greenflyfarmer I'm better now.

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    Wow. Now hold on here just a minute. The driver stopped to take a pic and your still on the ground? :huh Bless you and your family.
    #7
  8. StinkyCheese

    StinkyCheese Red or Green?

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    Las Cruces, NM
    Wow. Nasty accident. Thank goodness you weren't hurt anymore than you were. Hope you have a quick and complete recovery.
    #8
  9. kootenay kid

    kootenay kid Lets Ride

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    Holy shit man, thats terrible. Glad youre not in worse shape and hope things heal up fast.
    #9
  10. goodcat8

    goodcat8 I can pass this guy.....

    Joined:
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    Los Angeles
    Of all bikes to piggy back, that's a brute. :huh

    Seems like you took it like a champ :thumb
    #10
  11. jasonTDI

    jasonTDI TDI Guru

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    They stayed......wow...there is hope for humanity yet!

    AND they took pics.....$$$$$$ Those are some expensive pics....:clap

    Too bad about the bike. That was my favorite color combination.
    #11
  12. Jazzzzz

    Jazzzzz proof that gravity works

    Joined:
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    Glad you made it out in the condition you did, it certainly could've been a lot worse.

    For those of you skewering the driver for taking pictures - I certainly wouldn't have been been mashing the shutter button on a camera at that moment, but assuming he'd already called 911 and didn't have any EMT/paramedic training, it's probably best that he didn't try and move the OP around and inadvertently make those fractures any worse. When I was rear-ended and thrown from the bike a couple of years ago, none of the bystanders who stayed by to help so much as touched me after they realized I was breathing and conscious. Wouldn't surprise me if I found out they were taking pictures on their cell phones, too.
    #12
  13. 2slow

    2slow Road toad

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    Don't slam the driver, he made a mistake but stayed around and did the right thing. If he was a bad guy he would have just driven away and no one would even know who it was.
    #13
  14. oisterska

    oisterska d00b

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    Portland, OR

    +1 on that. Lucky he stopped, lucky he documented this for you, lucky it was just a few compression fractures. Do the physical therapy, please. Comp. fractured my T8 vertebrae, did not follow up well. Now it gets sore really easily.

    P.S. it's weird to leave the hospital with a broken back, no cast and note saying "no lifting for X days", right?

    HEAL FAST!
    #14
  15. VACommuter

    VACommuter Long timer

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    +1 on Olympia gear. Went down on gravel and broke some bones (hand,leg,ankle) but no road rash and pants/jacket stayed together and protected well.
    #15
  16. cliffy109

    cliffy109 Long timer

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    I handed him my phone and asked him to snap a few pics... for you guys. LOL

    He isn't a bad guy. He did stay and talked to my family and even helped load the bike on the trailer. I'm not out to lynch him. He screwed up.
    #16
  17. Greenflyfarmer

    Greenflyfarmer I'm better now.

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    I don't think I "slammed" the driver. I was expressing suprise and some indignation perhaps in my question. If you'll permit me, at the time it seemed like this was another case of people being spectators first at a bad event but not being helpful first. However, I stand corrected.
    #17
  18. FixxiT

    FixxiT Lunitic Fringe

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2004
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    TaxToll Island, NY Elevation: 22 feet

    OUCH! Heal fast!
    I was looking at this pic, did you have a helmet camera on?
    #18
  19. cliffy109

    cliffy109 Long timer

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    Nope. That's the cord for my Autocom. I have a ham radio hooked up but was not on it at the imte of the accident.
    #19
  20. blatant

    blatant Been here awhile

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    az
    glad you're ok and despite your description of what's what that you're in such good shape.
    #20