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This is not a fitness blog, but I just got hit by a car - if you can't be witty, then at least be bombastic [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
kyle cassidy

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This is not a fitness blog, but I just got hit by a car [Apr. 17th, 2014|05:05 am]
kyle cassidy
[mood |soresore]
[music |Aerosmith: Dream on]

A car plowed into me last night while it was making an illegal turn onto Belmont Avenue.

I'm mostly not hurt it seems.

So ... a few weeks ago that article came out saying that people who ran ultra-long distances actually had sometimes fairly crappy heart health -- like there's a point at which your body starts being damaged by all the running. And with this the Internet as a whole sighed a big breath of "See! running is bad for you! I'm going back to eat Tastykakes and watch House of Cards!" which isn't really what the article said, but I got curious while reading that and thinking about Jim Fixx who was a pioneer of running of my parents generation who dropped dead while out for a jog one day and the whole pre-internet world sighed loudly in the supermarket and said "See! Running is bad for you! I'm going back home to eat a pie and watch The Cosby Show!" so I looked on the Internet for athletes who'd died while doing athlete things and it seems the overwhelming majority of people like runners and cyclists who've died lately while running or cycling (Zinaida Stahurskaya, Jason MacIntyre, Scott Peoples, Amy Gillett, Lauri Aus, etc) were hit by cars. Your chances of running too much and blowing your heart up are small, but your chances of getting hit by a car increase every time you leave your house -- and runners & cyclists do it a lot.

This route was through Belmont park so we could check out the cherry trees in
bloom. It was pretty spectacular. Clickenzee to Embiggen!

I was running along with the West Philly Runners, trying to keep up with the second-fastest group and at mile 4 I'd fallen behind about 100 yards, but I was still doing around eight-minute miles, which I was pretty happy with and while crossing the Avenue of the Republics, which is a small street that opens up onto the very large Belmont ave, I saw, out of the corner of my eye a car that wasn't stopping for the light. I looked over just before it hit me and saw that the driver was looking left, towards oncoming traffic on Belmont to see if she could keep going to turn right or if there was traffic and she'd have to stop. I guess there wasn't traffic on the left and she wasn't expecting that anything could be coming from her right and by that time it was too late for all of us -- she sped up to make the right hand turn and hit me with the right fender of her car (it was a giant black Cadillac) and I went up on the hood -- as soon as she heard the noise she slammed on the brakes and I went off the hood and landed face down on the ground. I remember laying there thinking first that I wasn't in a hurry to get up and then thinking "wow, I really should have heard a car door by now...." I don't know how long it was, probably just a few seconds -- I felt like nothing was broken, so I rolled over and sat up and saw two people staring out the window of the car at me like I was a penguin they weren't expecting on the side of the road. I wiggled my fingers and does and they all worked and I didn't see blood anywhere, so I waved and said "I'm OK" and they drove off. Which I later thought was also weird. If I ran a red light and hit someone, I'd want to at least check and see if they had a concussion.

You can see my speed go from pretty good to zero on ye olde gps.
It's also interesting to get an insight into how the GPS averages time
Instead of flat to zero and staying there, it's averaging my previous
speed in there for at least a minute.
You may clickenzee to Embiggen!

One of the things that I like about the West Philly Runners is that it's a group of all kinds of people who run all sorts of distances at all sorts of paces, and also, that the group runs through all sorts of places in West Philly -- since I joined a year ago, there isn't, I don't think a street within two miles that we haven't run down. Plus there are these destination routes like this one, to see beautiful things I wouldn't know about otherwise.

While I was limping to my feet another group of West Philly Runners came past and I headed back with them a little more slowly. I felt mostly fine by the time we got back, there was a circular bruise on my thumb probably where I landed on a pebble.

This morning I'm pretty stiff in both legs and there's a little ouch on the leg that collided with the car, but I never hit my head and, luckily, I mostly t-boned the car rather than getting scooped up in it's giant grill and bent in half the wrong way. So, an 8 minute mile is 7.5 mph, so imagine running 7.5mph into the fender of a car, that's basically what happened. If I'd been running 7:50's I would have been right in front of it and then who knows, I could have ended up underneath it getting dragged until I sluiced out the back.

So, like Dr. Pangloss says, It's the best of all possible worlds -- and if not, it's certainly not the worst outcome.

This seems to be the worst of it so far. This and a bruise on my thumb.
You may clickenzee to Embiggen!

In retrospect -- I wasn't wearing a flashy neon jacket, but it wouldn't have helped, the driver was looking in the other direction. I'm not sure what would have stopped this from happening, on my part, maybe being more aware that a green light doesn't necessarily mean you can go. We'll see how it percolates in my brain over the next few weeks and months.

In the meantime -- have any of you been injured on the road like this? Bicycling, running, walking?

What have you learned?

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[User Picture]From: i
2014-04-17 02:19 pm (UTC)
Sports car related injury?
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[User Picture]From: i
2014-04-17 02:20 pm (UTC)
A friend of mine was hit in a crosswalk in '86, had both of his legs shattered, and retired to Ireland to drink and paint.
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[User Picture]From: p_m_cryan
2014-04-17 02:37 pm (UTC)
I'm glad you're all right.
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[User Picture]From: philrancid
2014-04-17 02:41 pm (UTC)
I hope it doesn't hurt much and that it doesn't frighten you away from something you seem to quite like doing.
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[User Picture]From: oracne
2014-04-17 02:55 pm (UTC)
It drives me nuts when people are turning into the crosswalk WHILE TALKING ON THEIR CELL PHONE.
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[User Picture]From: ladycelia
2014-04-17 02:56 pm (UTC)
I have been on the car side of that equation. In my case, a cyclist (adult) ran a red light on the expressway (3 lanes, each direction, plus double left turn lane), and broadsided me when I started to pull out for a left turn with the light. I was in the inside left turn lane, with a van next to me. Bounced off the hood of my car and into the road. Luckily, he wasn't hurt. Cars behind me started honking for me to get out of the way so that they could make the light and I lit into them for disregarding that I'd just had a bicycle and rider bounce off my car. Luckily he wasn't hurt and we were both able to drive away from it, but it was terrifying.
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[User Picture]From: ed_dirt
2014-04-17 03:00 pm (UTC)
You said "I'm ok" and the people driving a car that just hit a pedestrian then just drove off??

That's actually hit and run.

Did you get their plate #?
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[User Picture]From: girlguitarist
2014-04-17 03:31 pm (UTC)
This is what I was thinking! Hopefully you won't have any injuries that show up later.
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[User Picture]From: ironymaiden
2014-04-17 03:36 pm (UTC)
This. Also I don't see any mention of it, so I will say please see a doctor. Seriously.
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-17 04:40 pm (UTC)
i did. they actually had a very ironic vanity plate.
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[User Picture]From: allykatt
2014-04-21 04:52 pm (UTC)
now i totally want to know what this vanity plate said...
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[User Picture]From: tsarina
2014-04-17 05:55 pm (UTC)
I'm so angry that someone would not even get out of their car. That's insane. It's criminal!
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[User Picture]From: mizkit
2014-04-17 06:54 pm (UTC)
It is in fact literally criminal. WTF. I share your anger!
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[User Picture]From: beeker121
2014-04-17 03:13 pm (UTC)
Here in the Bay Area this has been a big topic lately because SF is having an epidemic of car vs. pedestrian accidents.
I err on the side of super careful. I always do a visual check at intersections, even if I have the light. If a car and I are both approaching an intersection at the same time I assume they have right of way (whatever the actual rules are) until I've made eye contact with them. This slows me down, but after a few near misses in a month span some time ago, I prefer the peace of mind to pace.
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[User Picture]From: pteppic
2014-04-17 03:23 pm (UTC)
I've not been hit while running ... yet.

But I have been taken out twice whilst on the bike. First one on a country road, car clipped me - then dragged me for around 50 metres. Car shook me off and then drove off as fast as he could. Lost large chunks of skin on my left leg and knee. Got a tatoo from all the crap. Second incident was on an residential estate. Right hand bend, car came in too close and I was trapped between high kerb and car. Skidded around 10 metres on my side, lost the skin on my left hand, arm and leg. Luckily my coach was behind me, scooped me up in his car and took me home. Regrowing skin *hurts*.

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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-17 04:43 pm (UTC)
I've been hit by cars three times on a bike, got hit once in the back by the side mirror of a pickup truck, once a taxi pulled over to the shoulder in front of me and i crashed into it and once someone backed up over me & my bike while pulling backwards into a parking spot i was standing in -- i jumped off the bike but the front wheel got run over. no serious injuries but enough to make me really, really appreciate the buffered bike lanes we have on some streets now.
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[User Picture]From: skywayman
2014-04-17 03:34 pm (UTC)
I broke my left femur when I was hit by a late 70's Oldsmobile. I learned that it hurt. A lot.

I got whiplash when falling out of a ski boat at 30mph. I learned that it hurt. A lot.

I broke the arch in my foot jumping off a cliff on alpine skis and landing too flat. I learned that it hurt. A lot.

I broke my helmet (and not my head) going over the handlebars on a mountain bike on a steep downhill and landing on rocks. I learned that it hurt. A lot.

One thing that I learned from those events is that I did NOT learn that it hurt until the next day. When it happened, I just got up and said, "Huh, I'm fine and that really should have hurt more than it did." Except for the leg. I couldn't get up.

If there is something I would like you to learn is that your body reacts to shock and trauma with adrenaline which numbs your pain response and heightens your senses. This is to aid in your own survival. However it also reduces your ability to assess your own physical response to the trauma.

If your post-trauma pain had a benefit, it is that you scared the s**t out of the driver who will not make that mistake again. I hope.
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-17 04:45 pm (UTC)
I was pretty aware in the hour or so after that i wasn't acting completely rationally right after the incident.
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[User Picture]From: kath_ballantyne
2014-04-18 06:48 am (UTC)
I'm assuming they weren't either but still, to not get out of the car and check. That's just awful/
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[User Picture]From: ehowton
2014-04-17 03:39 pm (UTC)
I am an enormous fan of Dr. Pangloss (the operetta not the novella) and thrilled you are too. It must be so, it must be so.

Glad you survived (mostly) unscathed. My second thought upon sitting up on the pavement peering over the hood at the occupants would have invariably been, "This will make great Livejournal post..."
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-17 04:46 pm (UTC)
the first thing i did was post to twitter and realize i was sad i didn't take a photo of the people staring out the window of the car at me....
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[User Picture]From: sistersolace
2014-04-17 03:41 pm (UTC)
I got hit by a car while walking when I was 12. What I learned was that if you say "I'm ok!" (even if you're 12 and have just gotten hit by a car so hard you lost consciousness and really just want to go home) then the other person's insurance company will try to use that to mean they don't have to pay your medical bills. But they will end up failing, because you're 12 and you had a concussion.

I can't believe that person just kept going, even if you did say you were ok. :/ I hope you feel better soon!
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[User Picture]From: ceciskittle
2014-04-17 03:43 pm (UTC)
I am glad you are mostly ok. I'd prefer you to be all ok, but mostly ok is better than not ok at all.

When I saw your post yesterday, I thought, you can now say you participate in an EXTREME SPORT.
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-17 04:47 pm (UTC)
the extreme sport of CAR WRESTLING.
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[User Picture]From: ceciskittle
2014-04-17 05:32 pm (UTC)
The most extreme part of it is you don't know when it will happen! Surprise, it's time for EXTREME CAR WRESTLING!!!
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[User Picture]From: rcmckee
2014-04-17 04:00 pm (UTC)
What I learned on my winter walkabout - specifically from the teenager who ran right over my foot as I walked towards the driveway - ALL drivers, without exception, are incompetent, inattentive, and blind. Most are additionally so stupid it ought to hurt THEM. Some of them also have phones. Also they have multi-ton metal tanks where we have, at best, a thin layer of denim. (Spandex doesn't count.) (My walking boots are steel-caps; I still have all of my toes.)

As a result, I don't ever cross an intersection or get in front of a car until I have specifically made conscious eye contact with the driver and exchanged some form of communication so that I know that they know that I'm there, and they have specifically acknowledged my presence. (Some will look you square in the eye and stay blank because they're not really there, so just making eye contact ain't enough. Most, if they're stopped, will wave you past. Not all. Those who won't look up from the phone tend to freak out as they pull out into traffic and suddenly realize there was a pedestrian in the walkway they just zoomed through...)

Also when you're crossing driveways be even more careful than when crossing intersections. People have a tendency (at least here) to start their acceleration runs about 20 or 30 metres back from the street in order to fit their 20' barge into the 21' space at 30 miles an hour... and that thing about "walk against traffic" doesn't work any more because people making right turns never ever look to their right. Oncoming traffic is from the left, there's nothing on the right that matters. Occasionally the stupid gets fun... guy who came zooming out of the gas station, turned quickly into the curb lane, and locked up the brakes just as he went over the row of cones and the barricade into the freshly poured cement. He wanted to stop, of course, but he'd built up enough momentum that his nice little Porsche was several feet out and up to both axles in wet cement before it quit moving forward...

Always carry a camera for moments like that.
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[User Picture]From: elusis
2014-04-17 04:21 pm (UTC)
"See! running is bad for you! I'm going back to eat Tastykakes and watch House of Cards!" which isn't really what the article said, but I got curious while reading that and thinking about Jim Fixx who was a pioneer of running of my parents generation who dropped dead while out for a jog one day and the whole pre-internet world sighed loudly in the supermarket and said "See! Running is bad for you! I'm going back home to eat a pie and watch The Cosby Show!"

Seriously Kyle? The world is not made up of two exclusive categories: People Who Like Running and People Who Pig Out On Junk Food. Knock it off.
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[User Picture]From: ms_violet
2014-04-17 04:46 pm (UTC)
Kyle, with all the love in the world, I have to agree. I just ate two doughnuts and I'm going to lie down and close my eyes for a few minutes because I walk a lot carrying a 15-lb backpack and I'm trying to grow two theater projects in my head at the same time. But I'm not a runner and I haven't been to the gym in six months. That doesn't make me lazy or stupid, it just means I'm running my own marathon at my own pace.
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[User Picture]From: ms_violet
2014-04-17 04:41 pm (UTC)
I am really, sincerely glad that you weren't more seriously hurt. I'm also really proud of you for rolling across the hood of the car like a 1970's TV cop. You've gone from Magnum P.I. to TJ Hooker.

Please rest up.
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[User Picture]From: kazoogrrl
2014-04-17 05:05 pm (UTC)
#1 Glad you are ok, report the accident

#2 That info was for long distance running , did it say anything about interval runners health?
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[User Picture]From: coffeeem
2014-04-17 05:11 pm (UTC)
Crikey. Well, if I were in a car and saw another car about to run into me, I'd honk my horn. So maybe for times like this you need a horn?
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[User Picture]From: coraline73
2014-04-17 05:14 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry you were hit, glad that you were not seriously hurt, and second/third/fourth the recommendation to log it with the police.

I got hit by a driver who turend onto a side road without looking - I was 3/4 of the way across the road when it happened so they only got me with a glancing blow, leaving bruises but no worse. And then they yelled at me as if it was my fault. Unfortunately I was too shaken to get their number plate.
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[User Picture]From: howlokitty
2014-04-17 06:30 pm (UTC)
I've been gently pushed by a car, but because they were going so slow, it never really left an impression. I did once see a man being hit by a car repeatedly while he was trying to cross the street, and it made me realize that some drivers are either just jerks or complete idiots.

The scene that sticks out in my head is of an elderly man trying to cross a side street where myself and the car in front of me had a stop sign. The driver of that car wasn't paying attention (or they did this on purpose, which is disturbing) and nudged the elderly man as he slowly walked across the street. The man looked at the driver, and I imagine they had a bit of eye contact. The elderly man stopped, and the driver scooted forward, nudging him a bit more. The elderly man started shaking his fist and yelling and started to cross again, and the car nudged him again. This went on for about two excrutiating minutes, where I found myself paralyzed by the shock of what was happening. Come to think of it, I should have checked to make sure the elderly man was okay, but by the time the car had finally pulled away, the elderly man was angrily walking away, and it didn't look like he'd been hurt because the car had been nudging him from a full stop each time.
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[User Picture]From: lois2037
2014-04-17 07:25 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad you're generally okay after all that! Apparently I'm lucky. I've been narrowly missed by drivers that just wanted me to leap out of the way (I did), and so far as I know, I've never hit anyone, though bicyclists in this town do not pay the least bit of attention to stop signs or red lights. I always look in both directions. ALWAYS. And sometimes a bicyclist or even a walker will appear out of nowhere, anyway. So I look again. I can't imagine hitting someone having that person roll up ONTO MY CAR HOOD and then just driving away because the person could stand up. I'd have stopped, gotten out and talked to you, and likely offered to drive you home or to an ER or maybe even your favorite bar. It's outrageous to me that she would just drive away like that.
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[User Picture]From: pds_lit
2014-04-17 07:42 pm (UTC)
Actually, I am a bit angry at both the driver and yourself. A police report should have been filed and you should have been checked out.

Note: that I did not use the words I would like to use for this comment. :)
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-18 12:43 am (UTC)
Yeah -- I realized within the hour that I wasn't acting rationally.
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[User Picture]From: arkham4269
2014-04-17 09:20 pm (UTC)

If this was a car accident, you would have exchanged info!

Not to sound like a n00b but shouldn't a person who hits you have to pay (or their insurance pay) for your injuries? I mean that *is* part of the auto policy (at least in every state I've lived in)

I mean if you have no insurance and then develop an issue later, the driver just got out of it. Plus shouldn't this be put on her record? Maybe she should have to take a class so she'd remember to actually pay attention. Sure you weren't hurt too bad but what about the next biker/runner she hits?
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-18 12:44 am (UTC)

Re: If this was a car accident, you would have exchanged info!

someone correctly pointed out i should report it to the police so they can get accurate statistics at the very least -- it may govern where they patrol or where they put zebra crossings or street signs, etc.
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[User Picture]From: damiana_swan
2014-04-21 04:54 pm (UTC)

Re: If this was a car accident, you would have exchanged info!

Aaaand... you have, yes? Along with license plate?

Edited at 2014-04-21 05:03 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: meg254
2014-04-18 12:18 am (UTC)


My brother, who used running to fuel a 100 lb life change, got clipped by a Hummer that was moving along quickly enough that it lost its side view mirror on Gerry's shoulder. He threw himself over a guardrail to avoid any further injury at the hands (?) of the car.

I'm not sure what was more disappointing, that the driver of the Hummer stopped, never got out of the car and then took off as Gerry climbed back over the guardrail, or that the owner of the home that he went to in order to call for help refused to open the door or give him a phone. They may have actually called the police ON him, which at least gave him access to emergency services.
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[User Picture]From: mizkit
2014-04-18 06:18 am (UTC)
I was hit, but not injured, by a truck coming up an icy hill behind me. It hit a bad patch, spun slowly out of control, and I think I must have just barely seen it coming from the corner of my eye, because I was taking one step--a step that was enough to save me from what I suspect could have been serious injury--to the side when its tail end spun in front of me, hit the sidewalk curb, and brought the hood of the truck around to bump my hip. It had enough force that I was knocked askew, bounced off the truck with my forearm, and straightened to assure the driver I was okay. And I was, but he *did* stop (the poor bastard's face was a rictus of terror when I hit the hood: I could see him perfectly clearly), and so did several pedestrians who were the ones who told me what had actually happened. All I knew was that all of a sudden a truck bonked into me.

Apparently I failed to post this last night. Hope you're healing up well, anyway.
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[User Picture]From: acwise
2014-04-18 03:36 pm (UTC)
Ugh. I'm glad you're okay. I can't believe the people didn't even get out of the car. That is just baffling. Take care of yourself!
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[User Picture]From: klwilliams
2014-04-18 04:42 pm (UTC)
I would have stopped and called the cops. Those morons could have killed you, and deserved a ticket at the very least.
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[User Picture]From: kylecassidy
2014-04-18 06:39 pm (UTC)
You know, it never freaking dawned on me until you mentioned it that even if they didn't hurt me, they ran a red light and caused an accident and should have gotten a ticket. Oh well. Next time I get run over I'll try and keep my brains unscrambled long enough.
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[User Picture]From: klwilliams
2014-04-18 08:51 pm (UTC)
Hey, I'm just glad you weren't hurt too badly. Even though I've never met you, I'm enjoying your stories and your photographs.
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[User Picture]From: lentower
2014-04-19 04:28 am (UTC)
Lessons learned:

Defensive use of public ways is best way to stay safe.

Never assume another user will do the safe thing.
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[User Picture]From: platyg
2014-04-19 08:09 pm (UTC)
My mom got hit by a one eyed motorcyclist on her road bike. He turned in front of her because the sun was in his EYE and he didn't see her. She broke a few ribs and cracked a lower vertebrae and was in a full upper body shell for almost 4 months. He had multiple driving violations and many domestic violations. Yet even after hitting a bicyclist he still has a drivers license.
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[User Picture]From: damiana_swan
2014-04-21 04:59 pm (UTC)
Several years ago, my girlfriend was crossing the street near where she worked at the time, and was hit in the face with a Toyota.

She thought she only had minor injuries, but she didn't remember the next few days, and a few years later had to have surgery because it turned out that some facial bones had been broken in the accident, which was why she started having a lot more migraines. By the time she had the surgery, she was basically having constant, multi-day migraines.

So, you've gotten checked out by a doctor, and reported this (WITH the license plate) to the police, yes? Please?
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[User Picture]From: ardentdelirium
2014-04-22 02:06 am (UTC)
I was the driver in a similar but drastically different case (the pedestrian in my case was at fault--crossing against the light, running into the intersection while obscured by a car in the left turn lane as I was going straight through an intersection, broke her hip) it is fucked up that they didn't stop/get out/deal with you at all and you probably shouldn't have sent them on their way without getting insurance information in case it was more serious than it seemed at the time (which happens a lot because you're initially not feeling as much due to shock) though it looks from your results that she wasn't going very fast and you managed to make out okay (yay, okay!)
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