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    1. Member
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      10-15-2018 03:38 PM #1
      I briefly mentioned this back when it happened, but now that the insurance stuff is finally finished up, I wanted to share my story and what I learned from it/would do differently.

      Back in mid-August, I went for a pretty early ride. I had to drive to NC later in the day, so I left around first light. Looking at my ride, I left at 6:09, which may have been a bit before first light. That is not uncommon for me: I have good head and taillights, which were both being used that day. I took roads i ride regularly: from my house in Fairfax over to the town of Vienna. About an hour in, in Vienna, I was hit by a car (the irony is I had just gotten off of the biggest bike trail in our area and was on a marked VA bike route).

      I was on a residential street which had a few streets on the left which T into it. They have stop signs, I do not. I was going to make a left. The driver was on the street to which I was turning: he was turning left onto the street I was on. He stopped, but didn't see me. I mistook his stopping for actually seeing me. As I was turning (at about 17 mph), I started to see him move. Luckily I saw him and started to turn back out of it/scream at him. I think turning out of it saved this from being much worse. He basically hip-checked me with one of his passenger doors. It was one of those scenarios that took forever in my head, but was basically instantaneously. I am not sure I even hit the ground.

      He kept driving: I have never yelled and sworn so loudly in my life. I left my bike in the road and went after him. I think once he realized what happened and/or heard and saw me, he pulled over. Thankfully. Cops were called, my wife was notified then we waited. He was found at fault and cited. He admitted fault to me. After the cop was done with me, I checked that my bike was ride-able and I gingerly rode home. After the adrenaline wore off, my right knee was quite painful. Every time I had to get out of the saddle it felt like I was being stabbed with a needle right in my kneecap area.

      Long story semi-short: knee was just badly bruised and really swollen. I was super sore the next couple of days (shoulders, back, etc.). Went to the ER Sunday night after getting back from NC.
      Bike/Gear: so this bike was literally 8 days old and obviously pristine. It ended up with some scratches on the down-tube, small scratch on the fork, scratches on the shifter/hood, small chunk taken out of the pedal, and some slight damage to the crank arm (stages). Wheels were a bit out of true. All in all, not terrible, but annoying as, you know, it was a week old and pretty much a dream bike.
      Shoes were scuffed/scratched, sun-glass lenses were cracked as they were thrown from my helmet. But really, that's it. No loss of skin, nothing terribly destroyed.

      The insurance company basically paid 100% of the damages. A few of the older items were lessened a bit as they were older but not by much. I'm not complaining about the money they paid out: I think it's fair. The bike is totally rideable: I thought about replacing the frame, but I'd rather keep that money and put it towards upgrades and some house projects.

      Here's what I would do differently: when the cop was there, I asked her to see the insurance card. She basically told me everything would be in the insurance report. It was, but the data was not correct. I had to google this guy's name and somehow found his cell number, which he answered. If this were to happen again, I'd get pictures of the driver, license plate (had that), insurance card, etc. The cop was super helpful after the fact, but that would have saved me some headaches.

      I got my pain and suffering check pretty early on. I think next time I'd wait on that and verify if any other bills were coming from the hospital. It worked out OK, but lesson learned: just make sure all bills are squared away before accepting this.

      The other, most important lesson learned: basically assume nobody can see you. I'm pretty safe when I ride and try to limit the risks I take/situations I am in. Could I have done more to not get hit at all? Probably. I'm less shy about being vocal with drivers. Just a quick "YO" - make sure I have their attention and am seen.

      Honestly, as far as getting hit by a car goes, I'll take this 10/10. Physically, I was basically fine and was on the bike 2 days later (albeit still sore). Any stuff that was damaged was more than paid for by the insurance company. It's just a hassle that nobody wants to deal with.

      Be safe out there guys.
      Last edited by moose82; 10-16-2018 at 09:34 AM.

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    3. Member OttaCee's Avatar
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      10-16-2018 10:00 AM #2
      Crazy story and one of my biggest fears. Since im somewhat new riding road, had a few questions on riding etiquette to prevent this happening to me:
      - Lights was your headlight solid on or flashing? Couldnt tell in your story if there was enough daylight to have it lighting up the road. Worth it to run 2 headlights?
      - Do you typically use hand signals? Been trying to remember doing this but forget
      - Turning onto a road - Do you cut at a 25 degree angle or larger sweep almost 45 degrees. Cause I dont trust cars, try to pass the car facing me then turning in. Looks weird and slower.
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    4. Member
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      10-16-2018 10:11 AM #3
      Quote Originally Posted by OttaCee View Post
      Crazy story and one of my biggest fears. Since im somewhat new riding road, had a few questions on riding etiquette to prevent this happening to me:
      - Lights was your headlight solid on or flashing? Couldnt tell in your story if there was enough daylight to have it lighting up the road. Worth it to run 2 headlights?
      - Do you typically use hand signals? Been trying to remember doing this but forget
      - Turning onto a road - Do you cut at a 25 degree angle or larger sweep almost 45 degrees. Cause I dont trust cars, try to pass the car facing me then turning in. Looks weird and slower.
      It was on solid. I'm not trying to give anybody a seizure. Typically during daylight, I don't run a headlight, but unless I'm in a group, have a blinky taillight on. It was a bit after 7, so it was light out, but definitely not mid-day amounts of sunlight. Had I been leaving at that time I wouldn't have brought a headlight.
      Yep, for sure use hand signals. Between that and trying to ride predictable, that helps cars know (maybe?) what I'm planning on doing.
      If there's a car where I'm turning left, I take a bit bigger of an arch, basically the same way I'd do if I were driving. Hell even if there isn't a car there, but the line of sight isn't awesome, I err on the side of leaving a bit more space. There have been enough times where I have cut in a bit since there wasn't a car, then one shows up.

      Honestly, I ride 6k miles a year, the vast majority are on the road. There's the occasional close pass, but more often than not, drivers are pretty cool about it. This was really an accident: there was no ill-will. We just need to do what we can to ensure we are seen and heard. People are not expecting to see something as small as we are.

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    6. Member OttaCee's Avatar
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      10-16-2018 10:19 AM #4
      Quote Originally Posted by moose82 View Post
      It was on solid. I'm not trying to give anybody a seizure. Typically during daylight, I don't run a headlight, but unless I'm in a group, have a blinky taillight on. It was a bit after 7, so it was light out, but definitely not mid-day amounts of sunlight. Had I been leaving at that time I wouldn't have brought a headlight.
      Yep, for sure use hand signals. Between that and trying to ride predictable, that helps cars know (maybe?) what I'm planning on doing.
      If there's a car where I'm turning left, I take a bit bigger of an arch, basically the same way I'd do if I were driving. Hell even if there isn't a car there, but the line of sight isn't awesome, I err on the side of leaving a bit more space. There have been enough times where I have cut in a bit since there wasn't a car, then one shows up.

      Honestly, I ride 6k miles a year, the vast majority are on the road. There's the occasional close pass, but more often than not, drivers are pretty cool about it. This was really an accident: there was no ill-will. We just need to do what we can to ensure we are seen and heard. People are not expecting to see something as small as we are.
      thanks for the responses. With the daylight dropping, will be doing more sunrise/sunset rides and wanted to be safe
      19 Tiguan SEL-P R-Line
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    7. Member
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      10-16-2018 10:25 AM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by OttaCee View Post
      thanks for the responses. With the daylight dropping, will be doing more sunrise/sunset rides and wanted to be safe
      dusk/twilight is my least favorite time to ride for being seen. I'd rather ride in the dark where at least drivers aren't looking right into the sun. We're getting to that weird part of the year where until daylight savings happens, I might shift to mid-day rides.

      So be safe: if you're riding during sunrise, think about your route, so you aren't heading east for a lot of it (cars driving right into the sun)

    8. 10-16-2018 10:31 AM #6
      Thanks for sharing. I'm glad it wasn't worse for you.

      In that exact scenario you were in, I've seen drivers often go WAY WAY over the stop line at an intersection.

      Meaning, if you have the right of way to turn, they're impeding your line and you have to be careful not to clip the corner or you have to remember not to "cheat" the line in the corner to save speed.

      I've actually given the group I ride with sometimes on Tue/Thu crap about their route. They have it go through downtown/NCSU area with crap drivers AND the freaking route has about 30 turns in it.

      I sat here and counted the turns by memory, and for only 25mi there are a total of 29 turns.

      I deem every turn a risk, particularly lefts where I don't have to stop at a light/sign.

      They could eliminate 1/3 of them simply by cutting out two 1/2 to 1 mile segments.

      I may propose for winter/night riding with the group they join the NC State team with laps around the arena at 1-mile each. Only two right turns per lap, both with right of way.
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    9. Member Samson's Avatar
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      10-16-2018 10:46 AM #7
      Sounds like it turned out as well as could be hoped. We still need to see a picture of this new superbike.

      I've had several close calls on the road, especially out here in NC. What sucks is that oftentimes it's not an "accident". Close passes, cutting in or out too close, and other things that are deliberately done. Every time that happens, my desire to ride on the road drops a little. When it comes to safety, I agree about using hand signals and lights. It's easy, and in theory, helps keep you safe. Riding into the sunset/sunrise always worries me too. Also, not being a butthole on the bike helps. Like all of us, I've certainly done some things that I shouldn't have, be it by accident or intentionally.

    10. Member
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      10-16-2018 11:09 AM #8
      Eric, I'll post some pics once the new wheels are in. Snapped a spoke last weekend and haven't had time to pick up a replacement. I think that was a response from getting hit. But I'll fix this wheel and true them, then keep them as back ups.

      Sheep, the same thing happens around here too. There are a few turns I make that basically every time, there's a car way out there. So yeah, being judicious certainly helps.

      Doing dumb things happen (either on purpose or not). I try to make good decisions and limit exposure as we all should. I hate the feeling right after doing something dumb.

    11. Member Dal97GLX's Avatar
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      10-17-2018 08:59 PM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by moose82 View Post

      Be safe out there guys.

      I'm glad everything worked out in the end for you. I'm at home still recouping from a hit and run that almost killed me. I can start a new thread(book probably) about my ordeal at a later date. Hit and run, six months in ICU. I was in a small group ride, 3 of us where hit. I got "ran over". Anyways, one of the most important pieces of information I've learned from this other than the obvious things - cover your ass with insurance. I tell that to everyone who enjoys outdoor activities. Whether it's auto, medical, umbrella, etc. As it is with almost everything now days, you must protect your self from the actions of others. The perp was caught and is currently going through the judicial system now. He basically had the minimum allowed full coverage. I've incurred close to 2 million dollars in medical bills and it's not over yet, I still have major reconstructive surgery after the 1st of the year. I have personal insurances the should cover more than 95% of this.

      As with all hard working people, what you work hard for can be put in jeopardy through no fault of you own in an instant. I have/had what I believed to be adequate insurance, no one ever thinks about a worst cases scenario like the one I'm in now. I'm lucky enough to know how insurance works(rights, laws) etc. that most folks don't know. So far it has been a savings grace, but a lot is still to be determined. I'm eligible for crime victims benefits from the state, but the strings attached don't make it worth it. A lot of details I can't share other than the events of that day and my hospital stay.

      That morning - riding single file on a rural road with a fully marked bike lane, extremely high lumen rear light, very clear weather, about 7 am on a Saturday morning. Pretty much doing everything right as far cycling goes. I'm not going to let this be the end of cycling for me, I'm determined to get back on the saddle eventually. But for piece of mind and my families sake, I'll be sure all my bases are covered - even better.

    12. Member
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      10-18-2018 10:02 AM #10
      Holy **** dude. First off, glad you are on the road to recovery. That sounds ridiculously scary. I know you can't talk about details, but do you think it was intentional? Really sorry to hear this happened to you and your buddies. What a horrible situation. Excellent advice on insurance.

    13. Member Dal97GLX's Avatar
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      10-18-2018 04:17 PM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by moose82 View Post
      do you think it was intentional?
      I can’t say to be honest. Trial starts next week, which means he already plead not guilty. There’s a preponderance of irrefutable evidence plus his acknowledgment of being behind the wheel that morning.

    14. Member
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      10-19-2018 04:41 PM #12
      Glad everything worked out OK OP. My brother was knocked off his bike a couple years back, thankfully other than cuts and bruises, the biggest damage was his bike.

      Quote Originally Posted by moose82 View Post
      So be safe: if you're riding during sunrise, think about your route, so you aren't heading east for a lot of it (cars driving right into the sun)
      100% this... Back in the summer a couple people were hit near here, the time of day and direction they were heading the sun can be blinding, it being a very slight incline makes it even worse. As far as I know both guys made it, although I don't know the extent of the injuries they had. I do remember driving past as the police were investigating, seeing the completely destroyed bikes was a real sickening feeling, it was only a few days later that I found out they were not killed.

      Stay safe everyone.

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