Monday, April 20, 2015

How to Total a Lexus

March 26th accident - at approximately 7:15pm with cool and damp conditions. I was traveling southbound on Broad Street passing the side street of Chittenden. As I was crossing the intersection, a driver traveling northbound on Broad Street turned into Chittenden and did not see me crossing the side street on my bicycle. I remember seeing the car coming at me knowing that I was going to be hit. He did not slow in any way - so I braced for the impact. I jumped up to avoid the bumper and remember crashing onto his hood and then going off of the driver side of the car onto the ground. It was unpleasant for sure but somehow I never lost consciousness.

I was rolling around in pain from the hit and was immediately checked on by some witnesses/bystanders. I was told not to move as they we afraid my neck and back were injured. They threw coats and blankets on me to stay warm as the road was cold and wet. Since they covered me up so quickly I did not get to see who hit me or what the damage was to the car, the bicycle, or myself. The one thing I noted was that the driver never even said sorry for hitting me. Nothing... I only remember the nice words of those helping me and those that were nice enough to call my wife.

I was then placed on a backboard as the police and paramedics arrived on the scene. They loaded me in the ambulance and we took off for St. Joseph's hospital. They informed me that my wife would meet us there and that I did some major damage to the car. The hood and windshield were smashed and the car had to be towed.

At the hospital they brought me in to be evaluated. I complained of widespread pain in my left wrist, left elbow, left hand, both knees, left shin, and right hip. They evaluated and x-rayed everything and I was released hours later with a few scrapes and bruises but nothing broken - that they could tell. I was told to follow up with an orthopedic as the hospital wanted to make sure my scaphoid bone(wrist) was not broken and that any other issues could be addressed.

At the time it wasn't too bad but I could tell from the soreness that the bruising would be huge. A few days later it looked like I had been hit by a car. My right hip had a huge eggplant colored bruise on it from landing on the pavement as well as the inside of my right thigh from the top tube of the bike. The blood pooling there in both places was setting the stage for some really nice colors in the weeks to follow. The gash in my shin was particularly pretty as well. They said it didn't need stitches but I bet that was a close call as it was pretty deep. For my hand/wrist as well had some good bruising as I'm not sure what it made the biggest impact with, the hood of the car or the pavement when I landed.

I followed up in Monday with my orthopedic doctor to look at my wrist and my shoulder. My shoulder was really hurting after the accident as I could not lift my arm. They were both looked at, and my wrist didn't seem to worry him but my shoulder needed to be addressed. He told me to seek physical therapy and try to heal it that way. If it didn't get better in a few weeks then it may be a torn rotator cuff and need an mri. At this point he suspects it is just a sprained rotator cuff.

After that appointment I kept self evaluating and felt my face, jaw, and side of my head were sore. Currently the face and head pain have gone away which leaves me with the nagging jaw pain. It's been coming and going but it seems to be getting better overall with time. At first it was hard to properly clench my jaw but now it seems to work better but with discomfort when I have to open my jaw wide.

7 days after the accident, on the following thursday, I was finally able to pick up my bicycle and police report from the Clifton police department. That was a whole other ordeal to just get that released. They said they were just holding it for me but since the report wasn't closed it took many extra days and 4 days of calls and visits to the police station to finally get it released. From both sides of the page with the report and the bicycle, the result of the accident was shocking.

The bike was smashed. It's a total loss. It's a wonder how both legs were not broken in this crash. My crank arm took the brunt of the hit as it is bent inside my frame. My front wheel was ripped off the bike from being smashed so hard and the frame is completely bent and broken in multiple places. My power wheel was smashed, my computer doesn't work, pedals broken, rear light broken, helmet smashed, and my clothing was destroyed. It's very sad to see that much damage and I'm glad I was able to walk away.

On the police report side there were a couple of things that stood out. The first was that the report indicates that the 74 year old man who hit me with his Lexus was inattentive and didn't see me in the intersection. The least he could have done was to come see if I was ok and apologize, but there was none of that. And secondly, that there were no tickets issued to the other driver? How is that even possible??? I guess in Clifton it's ok to mow down a cyclist with your car and just say oops...sorry. Oh yea that's right - he didn't even say sorry.

Currently it is three weeks after the accident and I'm feeling much better, but not 100%. My shoulder is still messed up. I had an orthopedic appointment today and although I'm regaining better range of motion, he still thinks it's partially torn or there is inflammation that may need treatment. An MRI is the next step to assess the damage and go forward. There is a possibility of a tear that requires surgery and that would be 6 months of surgery, rest, and physical therapy. I'm praying that is not the case...