Tag Archives: crash

Anatomy of a rainy crash

Branch segment that took me down on my commute into work.

Well, I almost made it through the rest of the year without crashing after my spill at the end of the Sandy Springs crit in May. Today, though, I hit the branch that is shown in the picture above. I never saw it because it was mixed in with a bunch of leaves on the ground. When I hit the branch, my wheels slid out immediately left and me and the bike went sliding on our right sides. It was not “slide friendly” pavement. Look at the damage to the handlebar tape and handlebar. Now imagine that same damage on my arm, hip, and hands. Or at least that’s what I thought I was going to find … instead I have some bad road rash in just a few isolated spots on my arm, hip, and hands. But enough to make it a challenge to type and to be dripping blood from those spots. I may have done something to my hip, though. Right now I am just hoping that I only damaged the muscles and tendons on the outside and inside of my hip.

As soon as I hit the branch and went flying along the ground with my bike, I had enough time to think as I was sliding along the ground for 8 SECONDS. My thoughts went something like this:

  • What did I hit?
  • I’m ok, that didn’t hurt too bad, I can still make it into school
  • Oh no, this is a really long slide
  • Oh crap, this is not good pavement to be sliding on
  • When am I going to stop?
  • Class is cancelled
  • I can’t ride home

It’s amazing what all had to come together for me to crash. There was a bad storm system moving in, so I left for work early and was planning on going through Bluff Park. But as I got near Lorna Rd, the clouds were getting darker and the rain was starting to get heavier, so I decided to turn around and take the more direct Vestavia route into school. Still, as annotated in the map, I was planning on taking the Vestavia Forest route since I had plenty of time this morning to add on the extra mile. Unfortunately, I missed the Hwy 31 light and I wasn’t going to wait for it so I turned around and was planning on taking my normal route up Badham – Willoughby – Garland – Wickford. But when I got to the Willoughby intersection, I decided that I didn’t want to do the extra steep climb in the middle and opted to stay straight on Badham since it is a more gradual climb. So this put me onto a section of Badham that I normally do on my way home from work. But on that route home, I normally turn at the intersection where today I went straight. It was just past this intersection on a stretch of road that I hardly ever ride where I hit the branch hidden amongst the leaves on the road.

Anatomy of a wet bike crash

Here’s the link to the data on Strava … you click and zoom in on the section of the crash to see the 8 second slide. http://app.strava.com/rides/2349857

I stood up and was feeling some pain in my hip and a lot of pain from the road rash on my hands so I just started yelling “help” because I was hoping somebody would come out from their house and offer me a ride home or at least so I could borrow a phone to call home for Kristine to come pick me up. I stood there yelling for a minute or two and nobody came out. I walked back up the street and found the branch which was the only thing in the road that I could see that would have caused such a sudden jolt and crash. I stuck it in my backpack and tried to figure out what to do. By this point after falling, I had calmed down enough and had assessed the various pains enough to realized that I could probably ride home because I could still move everything and nothing appeared to be broken on my bike. I got on and started riding just as the storm really hit. It was a thunderstorm downpour all the way back to my house.

I was just inspired to see what I had written up about previous crashes … check them out here:

https://toonecycling.wordpress.com/tag/crash/

And a couple of accidents back to back in the summer of 2006:

http://www.toonesalive.com/blog/family/?p=244
http://www.toonesalive.com/blog/family/?p=232 (hit and run)

Sandy Springs crash, videos, and race report

Summary – racing well, but missed break which lapped the field. I was working hard to stay at the front with 2 laps to go when my front wheel started to slide out on the fast downhill turn #3. I straightened up to stop the slideout, but that meant that I wasn’t going to be able to finish making the turn at 32+ mph. I ended up slamming into the barriers shoulder first at 32.3 mph according to my iBike. Here’s the same explanation in video form at the hospital:

I am incredibly sore on both sides and the back of my neck. Here is a picture showing the bruising and swelling around my neck and where the helmet straps cut into the skin. Same thing on the other side of my neck. Ouch.
bruising around my neck
shoulder swelling
Sandy Springs crash power data annotated
Warm-up, race, and trip to hospital

More videos from the race…




Heartrate and power data…
2011 Sandy Springs power data annotated
2011 Sandy Springs heartrate data annotated
2011 Sandy Springs heartrate data summary

Strava lap data… http://app.strava.com/rides/536484

        MI	FT	MPH	WATTS	HR	TIME
Sandy 	0.6	32	15.3	143	118	0:02:22
Sandy 	0.6	32	14.2	112	117	0:02:33
Sandy 	0.6	32	16.8	136	115	0:02:09
Sandy 	0.8	32	10.3	135	119	0:03:31
Sandy 	0.6	32	25.5	310	150	0:01:25
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.9	423	166	0:01:15
Sandy 	0.6	32	29.3	449	168	0:01:14
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.9	425	168	0:01:15
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.1	386	169	0:01:17
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.5	435	169	0:01:16
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.5	418	173	0:01:16
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	401	173	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.7	357	174	0:01:21
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.5	433	173	0:01:16
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.1	354	171	0:01:23
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	368	172	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.4	381	174	0:01:19
Sandy 	0.6	32	30.9	518	178	0:01:10
Sandy 	0.6	32	29.7	454	176	0:01:13
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.1	331	172	0:01:23
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.4	384	174	0:01:19
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.4	367	174	0:01:19
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.1	322	172	0:01:23
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.4	354	172	0:01:22
Sandy 	0.6	32	30.1	456	176	0:01:12
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.1	357	172	0:01:23
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.9	452	180	0:01:15
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.9	456	187	0:01:15
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.4	354	182	0:01:22
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.7	363	171	0:01:21
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.1	370	168	0:01:20
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	371	170	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	29.3	407	174	0:01:14
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.1	343	171	0:01:20
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.4	383	171	0:01:19
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	361	173	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	371	172	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	359	172	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.1	353	172	0:01:20
Sandy 	0.6	32	25.2	311	173	0:01:26
Sandy 	0.6	32	25.5	324	172	0:01:25
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.1	323	171	0:01:23
Sandy 	0.6	32	25.8	324	175	0:01:24
Sandy 	0.6	32	26.1	337	175	0:01:23
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.1	349	174	0:01:20
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.1	352	173	0:01:20
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.9	428	175	0:01:15
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.4	363	176	0:01:19
Sandy 	0.6	32	27.8	401	178	0:01:18
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.1	409	179	0:01:17
Sandy 	0.6	32	28.1	405	180	0:01:17