Monday, January 9, 2012

Could Have Been Worse

To start off, I should let you know I'm OK, but I was hit by a car today in Tallahasse. Or rather I hit a car, when the driver pulled out into me. However you phrase it, it really sucked.

Tallahasse is the worst place I've ever ridden a bike. It makes Boston look like Amsterdam. Not only is cycling infrastructure nonexistent, there aren't even any shoulders on the roads. I went way off my route to try to find safer roads, but no luck. The city has really made sure that cyclists aren't welcome.

Just as I was almost finally, finally out of town an FSU student in an SUV started to pull out of a side street that was partially obscured by a sign. I thought 'She probably won't see me', and checked quickly over my shoulder to see if I had any room to swerve (which I did not, thanks to the no shoulders, and drivers not giving me an inch of space). By the time I looked ahead again she was already there and I had a split second to brace for impact. It was really unpleasant. Some very nice witnesses called an ambulance. I was pretty shaken up at this point, and it hurt to move the fingers on my right hand. I guess that's to be expected when you put a dent in someone's car. The firefighter who showed up first said he'd be surprised if I didn't have a broken finger or two.

Long story short- my fingers aren't broken, just sprained. And I'm the one at fault, because of something in the Florida law... I hit the car, not the other way around. I'm not sure... The cop was not very helpful, and I didn't think to ask more questions about it. If only there were a 'Bike Safe Boston' card for Florida (next card, Josh?). All she said was, "I'm not writing any tickets. So unless you want to sue the guy who put the sign there, we're done."

Thankfully, with a little ice and rest I'll be a-ok. The Brown Machine could use a front wheel true (I brought a spoke wrench with me), but other than that it's also fine. The EMTs strapped it to the stretcher in the ambulance so I wouldn't have to try and track it down at the police station. Pretty nice of them, and they thought it was hilarious to have it on the stretcher (first responder humor, I guess).

I rode away from the hospital, but my hand doesn't feel awesome, I've got some road rash on my knees that was chaffing, and to be perfectly honest I'm feeling a little gun shy in the traffic here. So my plan is to lay low tonight, and probably grab a car tomorrow to get me out of FL, keep me on schedule, and give me a days rest. I won't let one little (now dented) SUV get in the way of adventure.


  1. Yikes! Glad you're okay, Em. Be so easy, now.

  2. I'm so glad you're ok! Take care, and maybe it's time for one of those dorky air horns.

  3. A little late but might be good reading while you are recovering.

  4. Oh Jebbas ! Well, you can't teach an old Southerner new tricks (UGA grad here).

    To paraphrase Rolling Stones - 'to bike in this state, you must be tuff tuff tuff tuff tuff tuff' !

    Thanks for sharing ! Hammer on ! Whoooo hooo!


  5. Yowzers. Glad it wasn't serious. Definitely rest a bit before continuing on.

  6. Ugh, no good Emily. This really sucks. Sending you love.

  7. Yikes, be safe out there! And check out when you get a little closer to the Lone Star state.