The way the accident happened was: Bill was merging onto 131 Northbound at Market at about 12:30 on Wednesday 05/18/11. He noticed a wheelbarrow in the merging lane and realized he could merge past it. He checked for traffic and as he was accelerating a white car swerved (actually came at him at a 90 degree angle). I won't receive the accident report until Tuesday at the earliest. It's possible that the car was trying to avoid another object in the road which caused them to lose control or it may have all ready hit something else and lost control. I won't know until I see the report. They do have web cams in that area as well so maybe they can find out how the wheelbarrow got there. As many of you know, he was planning to leave for Burkesville, KY for a rally the next morning. If it had to happen I am grateful it happened here and not en route or in Burkesville. At least up here we both have a lot of family and friends for support.
Bill's most serious injury was to his spine. The T5 vertebrae was fractured which crushed the spinal cord. He is fused from T2 to T8 to stabilize the spine. This will hopefully take the pressure off the spinal cord and allow the inflammation and swelling to subside. The neurosurgeon said there was significant damage to the cord and Bill has a 4 to 5% chance of walking again. Presently he is paralyzed from the breasts down. He also said that Bill is lucky to be alive and that he does not have a brain injury. I told him it was due to the fact that he wears a full helmet with a full face shield along with other protective gear from head to toe. The second most serious injury was a badly broken and dislocated right shoulder. The humerus (bone in upper arm) was jammed into the shoulder blade. It took the surgeon 30 minutes to dislodge the bone prior to doing the surgery. The fusion will take 6 to 12 months to heal and the shoulder 18 months. The left knee does not require surgery at this time - he has a brace with a hinge instead. But he is alive and can think clearly and talk so that is huge.
'84 R100RT '04 CLC
BMWBeer Motorcycles Women
Almost died Tuesday.... I think a turtle saved me.
Hit a deer on my bike. I'm fine, bikes damaged, deer's dead.
I was 20 km south of Haliburton on Hwy 118. I was tooling along, seeking
the perfect line with sun on the water. Came off a lake into
a right hand turn, and whamm.... A deer has come over the guardrail
and smucky, right into me. I was slow for the corner, likely at 70 km/h.
I think I had just got to the brakes after I saw it, but it was right on me.
The deer barely missed getting across the front of the bike, I think my
fairing (shield's up!!) deflected him a bit so I didn't t-bone it. Just clipped
the side of the front wheel and then rolled down the side of the bike,
bending the crash bar and crushing my side case on the right side.
The impact spun the back tire out wide and I was in a flat track style
drift around the corner, still at 40 km/h. Lady behind said she saw
the whole bike sideways. Somehow it snapped back into the curve,
wobblely wobblely, and I pulled over and shut er down. Can you say
adrenaline, sure, I knew ya could.....
Bike checked out okay, some fibreglass cracks to be mended and my
case to try and hammer back into shape. Wilhelm will ride many a mile
more. This happened 160 km from home, so more time in the saddle to
ponder it all. What am I doing riding this thing? Why not today? What
could have just happened? and really....What's it all about?
Well, about an hour before the deer I stopped the bike on top of a
blind hill on a corner and turned around. It was a foolish place to stop
and turn the bike, but I had to go back. I had noticed a small snapping
turtle, maybe 4 inches across; right in the middle of the road. A car
or truck would never see it, splat... Well, I scooped it up and with words
of encouragement helped it across to the far shoulder. Back on the bike
and on my way, momentarily happy in my efforts to save the turtle. An
hour after the deer, the best I can come up with as to the how's and why's
of the world.......Sure glad I stopped for that turtle, I think my karma took a
tick to the upside, and but for six inches more of deer, I am down and sliding
ATGATT. It was hot today, maybe 28C. But I was wearing full riding suit
with armour, full face helmet, riding boots and gloves. Would have been much
nicer like some of the HD types I saw this week in their tee shirts, shorts, and
running shoes. But one thing I do know about the world is its all managed risk.
Prepare the best you can and be careful. I don't think it could have gone
much differently, my speed was appropriate for the road, there was just
- note the deer turd on my case, I guess I hit him in the ass
The last thing I want to be is just like everyone else...
1969 Sport Fury Convertible
when we pulled into the pits at the race, our friends all asked "what is all over the front of your trailer?"
i guess you could say that we knocked the crap outta that deer!
keep riding on the lucky side of the road!
OK here’s my story with a bit of irony.
On a hot day I went for a ride with a friend and we were going to stop off at the dealer so I could look at getting some new boots. On the last left turn before the dealer, the back end of the bike slid out. Instinctively, I put my left foot down and prevented myself from dropping the bike. However, my left foot hit my saddle bag really hard to the point I was limping. I parked my bike at the dealer and took my boot off. After a while my foot wasn’t feeling any better, and someone mentioned I should probably put my boot back on just in case my ankles swells up too much. Not wanting to be stuck 50 miles from home, I put my boot back on and limped back to my bike. I rode home using the freeway mostly to minimize shifting.
After a few days of not getting better, I went to see my doctor and he told me I had a chip fracture on the ankle bone. How did I get the fracture? It wasn’t until my foot had healed that I determined what happened. I was wearing the BMW Transition boot, which has an exoskeleton to stabilize the ankle in an accident. However, this required a pivot point with a bolt in it. When my foot was completely healed, I put the boot on and realized that the chip fracture lined up perfectly with the bolt on the boot. When my foot hit my saddle back, it drove the bolt into my ankle bone causing the fracture. It’s kind of weird set of circumstances, but I doubt I’ll have a boot like that again. The irony is that I was going to the dealer to buy new boots.
As far was what caused the incident? I had only been riding on the street for about three years, and wasn’t fully aware of the hazards surrounding tar snakes. What’s a tar snake? In case you haven’t heard the term, a tar snake is a common term out here to describe the tar used to fill cracks in asphalt streets. The tar has a very low melting point, and on a hot day can be very pliable. I went out to the scene of the incident and the intersection I turned at was covered with tar snakes. The temperature was similar and I realized how soft and gooey the tar can be on a hot day. I also liked leaning a lot, so probably was leaning too much for the turn and the rear tire slid out when I hit a tar snake.
Jeff in W.C.
1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
"I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer
My only crash (so far) was in college. Riding home from class one day on my Yamaha RZ350. I pull out from the parking lot to the back road I take home. There is a tight S curve going around a building. I'm leaned in the turn going about 15mph when a pickup truck comes around the other corner almost completely in my lane.
I try to adjust my lean angle to get out of the way, but at that moment my front wheel was over a manhole cover... Front end washout. Slid a bit and was uninjured but pissed! scratched up my new bike and the guy never stopped or even noticed he took me out!
Best near miss was leaving work one day about a year ago. Four lane road with median. Just took off from a red light in the left lane behind one other car.
As we accelerate, a convertible Cadillac from the opposite direction dives into a turnaround gap in the median and almost pulls right into the car in front of me. We're doing about 40-45. The car swerves to miss, but I'm right on top of the guys rear bumper. Not sure exactly how I did it, but I think I locked both wheels and slid around the back end of the car. Fortunately no one was in the right lane or I would have been a sandwich!
Needless to say I had some choice words for the senior driver who was yakking on his cell phone when he decided he needed to pull the U-turn. I was livid! We pulled up to a light and he tried to apologize. I just remember yelling something about hanging up the damn cell phone and pay attention to your driving since you almost made my wife a widow!
I was shaking so hard I had to pull off the road and get myself together!
Was Riding yesterday on the Loess Hills Scenic Hiway in Iowa, just south of Pisgah Iowa when I had a close encounter with a turkey vulture. It apparently was taking off from the ditch on my left side and thanks to some quick reflexes on my and the vulture's part we avoided each other but I literally could have reached my left hand out and grabbed it. Thankfully I didn't because they apparently pee on their legs in order to cool themselves. GROSS. I'm not sure who of us was more startled by the encounter mainly because turkey vultures aren't very emotive creatures.
Had a good laugh after and was glad for that motorcycle saftey class this summer.
07 R1200GSA and I love it more every time I ride
It's happened twice in the last few weeks. I'm in the left lane on a four lane road and the car to my right just comes over like I'm not there. Thank goodness I was alert enough to hit the brakes. The horn on an 08 RT is hard to get to, I have half a left thumb. If I had a loud Harley this never woulf have happened.......no I'm not ready to get the loud Harley.
I ride a 2008 R1200RT
In the end the sweeper wins! A couple years ago I was enjoying a pleasant ride through the loess hills of Iowa. I live in Nebraska, Iowa does not have a helmet law,now I knew my helmet would go into the left hardcase I tried three different ways but it wouldn't close so back on my head I want to ride. About 1/2 hour later I get blown by some crotch rocket, it's sunday morning no other traffic. So I grab a gear and set off to keep up, never been on the road before going through some twistys and into a big left hand sweeper, when I noticed a gravel road intersection right on the appex and no view of oncoming traffic. From that point the only thing I remember was the rear tire breaking loose.Then I woke up in the ditch, a broken rib on each side from the tank and a shattered coller bone from the helmet smashing into the tach housing. From the looks of the helmet I'm sure glad it wasn't my face! After I got out of the hospital we went to the sight, I was on two wheels when I nearly took out a road sign ,the tracks were about 6 inches from the pole base ( must of still been a hard left lean) then the front wheel dropped into a rut which sent the bike into a end over landing on the left rear and ended up resting on it's left side with my left leg under it , between the frt. wheel and the radiater (85 k100rs)
moral : unknown road,to high of gear, to fast period!!!!!
helmets do save lives!!!!!
I had my crash on video. The following day, the driver then claimed that I injured 6 people in the minivan. Miraculously neither my bike or my body was injured. This video must prove that BMW motorcyles are safer than minivans. Have you ever heard of a motorcyclist at a slow speed injuring a motorist in a vehicle that ways 8 times more ?
Last edited by LuckyGrownup; 01-22-2012 at 11:43 PM.
Just to be a devil's advocate - squirting through the parking garage at the beginning of the video illustrates only the beginning of questionable decision making in the OP's riding style.
2003 R1150RS (current) / 1978 R80/7 (prior)
1966 R69S (prior) / 1972 R75/5 (prior)
I about came to grief by violating a cardinal rule when operating a motorcycle (any vehicle actually). Coming into Jemez Springs,NM, I was gawking at the beautiful scenery, and not watching the road, failed to notice that the road turned right...and I kept going straight. When I looked up, I was right in the middle of the oncoming lane...Had there been a car there, I would have nailed it square on...OOOPS
Steve in Santa Fe
2005 DR 650
I was riding home from work at 6 PM. It was dark with a steady rainfall. I was travelling my usual route, a 4 lane city arterial with curbs and sidewalks on each side; no shoulders or bike lanes.
I passed a city fire station and noticed the paramedics running out to their ambulance. The roadway has stoplights every 3-4 blocks. The ambulance pulled out behind me with visibar lights and traffic light strobe activated.
It was amazing, the traffic lights that always snared me now turned green in front of me as I stayed about 300 feet in front of the ambulance. Speed limit is 35 MPH but with the rainy conditions the ambulance was travelling between 40-45 MPH gradually closing the gap between us. I accelerated a little to maintain the gap and kept enjoying the traffic lights turning green in front of me as I sped along.
There was no traffic around me, but I could see some congestion about a 1/2 mile ahead. The urge to keep moving due to the rain and the sheer enjoyment of every traffic light "magically" turning green for me, thanks to the ambulance, overcame the smart move of pulling over, stopping, and allowing the ambulance to pass by.
As I approached the traffic traveling my direction, driver's were already showing the "jitters" of an emergency vehicle approaching them from the rear. Some brake lights were coming on, some turn signals were being activated, and some like me kept rolling along hoping the ambulance would turn off and not interrupt our cruise.
I was in the right lane and began passing a car on the right who was in the left lane. I saw his right turn signal activate,reflecting off his chrome bumper,and he began to slowly enter my lane with me still in it. He was attempting to pull to the right and stop to allow the ambulance to pass. With a curb immediately to my right, I accelerated to pull ahead. I was just entering an intersection where the road slopes down on the other side creating a partial blind spot. I was travelling about 40 MPH with a car merging into my lane from the left and lo and behold, about 50 feet in from of me is a stopped blue minivan, who had travelled through the instersection and then immediately stopped in the right lane to allow the ambulance to pass.
With only curb on my right, I instinctively tapped the brakes on my 91 K75RT and the rear wheel immediately locked and began to skid on the wet pavement. I released the brakes and knew the only way out of this mess, was to steer out of it. I was back on the throttle to finally clear the car to my left and swerved to the left and back to the right, missing the car on my left by several feet and the left rear corner of the stopped blue minivan by about a foot.
Nothing like the thrill of raw adrenelin rushing through your veins.
Epilog: Yes, I should have pulled over when I observed the ambulance behind me with emergency lights activated. I especially should have pulled over before entering traffic in front of me. They were like chickens with their heads cut off all trying to decide if, when, and where to stop to allow the ambulance to pass.
The good thing was remembering my defensive driving training and the skill of steering out of trouble rather than locking the brakes, or worse, laying the bike down.
i think we need to come back to some of the original intent of this thread, which was not just sharing what happened, but analyzing why the crash happened, and what could have been done to prevent it. As AndyVH has posited in another Riding thread- a crash is (nearly) always OUR fault, regardless of what the other idiots(s) did.
in this case, attempting to pass cars on their wrong (right) side with the added distraction of an emergency vehicle rapidly approaching from behind was a foolish choice. best would have probably been to continue "leading" the ambulance until you reached the stopped/stopping traffic, and then pulling over and waiting for the entire mess to straighten itself out.
legal would have been pulling over as soon as you realized that the ambulance was coming up behind you.
Ride Safe, Ride Lots
I stopped over at a buddies house who lives in a residential neighborhood. I decided to practice a low speed (I was around 5mph or less) counterweighted turn in order to park my bike the direction it needed to be. While I was dragging my rear brake in the turn, I applied a little to much pressure, the bike stopped and over I went. I put my foot out to try and hold bike up. Not able too, laid bike on side. Luckily I remembered and read in the motorcycle excellence manual about how to properly lift a bike up using your backside. Worked like a charm. My buddy was not home. I got back on my bike and rode home in some pain. At home I parked my bike, took off my riding gear, and then put my helmet away. I then called my buddy who's house I had stopped by to tell him my leg was sore and that I had dropped my bike in front of his house. He did not answer, I left a message. NEXT -I woke up in the Emergency Room.
What really Happened.....
When I put my foot out I tore my hamstring. After I got home, I took my helmet off and was standing in my garage, I fainted (body telling me to lay down after injuring hamstring), fell and hit my head on the garage floor. My buddy who I called got my message and came over. He saw me on the garage floor and called 911. I came home from the hospital the next day with a good bump on the head and a very sore hamstring. I was lucky, no permanent damage on my head or leg. A bonus was no damage to my bike other than a scratch on my valve cover -which I am leaving there for a while as a reminder. The road I had been riding on was just paved smooth blacktop.
Dumb decisions to never make again.....
-Never put my foot out to try and stop a bike from tipping over. Bike is gonna win!
-Never ride home if your hurt. Could have been a lot worse.
What I learned.....
- Practice, Practice, and more Practice
- Integrated brakes handle differently than conventional. Know your braking system and how it effects low speed counter weight turning. (I was aware that I have integrated brakes, I did not think I had to use a different technique with them. They are touchy. I wish there was more written technique published on this. The "Motorcycle Excellence" manual does not go into integrated brake riding techniques besides mentioning that these type of brakes exist.) - I have been waiting to take the experienced riders course, so far the two I have been registered for got cancelled due to lack of students... I believe one of the instructors rides an RT. But I will get there one way or another.
- Sit or Lay down after injuring yourself or your body might just do it for you.
One intersection at a time......