A few things were different last Saturday - firstly I normally ride on a Sunday as my boys have hockey and secondly I normally only mountain bike. No Hockey and the MTB group was leaving too early for me, so I dusted off my road bike (only the second time using it this year) and headed out to join the road biking group for a nice long Saturday morning ride. Under the astute leadership of George, we headed out towards Edenvale, Modderfontein and then towards Midrand - down Allendale road. It was really great to be on the road bike again, my few weeks of limited winter activity were well felt when climbing up a few of the drags. It was so great seeing all the riders in the group again, they really are a fantastic bunch of people.
I lost the wheel of the group when they were speeding down a long down hill (about 15 meters behind) and as I started the climb up the next rolling hill - WHAM!!! I got taken out from behind by a mini bus taxi. I can't really explain the feeling, it was surreal, it was the last thing that I expected to be suddenly hit from behind and hit the ground. Fortunately I still had some momentum from the downhill, I was doing about 30-40km/h so the impact was not as severe as it could have been. The taxi pushed my bike out from under me and my back hit the front of the taxi before I landed on the ground. Fortunately he braked and did not ride over me, as I landed rolling and screaming from the sudden agony in my lower back. I managed to crawl to the side of the road and lay withering in agony from the pain. Thinking to myself I really hope my back isn't broken. The rest of the group turned back to assist me and Johan and his son in law, who witnessed the accident from behind in his car, pulled over in front of the taxi so it couldn't drive away.
The taxi driver got out and started to say that it wasn't his fault, it was the truck that he was overtaking (using the emergency lane on a dual lane road) - go figure that one out. Anyway to cut a long story short the group was really awesome they kicked into action straight away, making sure I was comfortable, my wife was contacted (thx Mandy) and that an ambulance was called. I ended up having 8 emergency vehicles, including a fire engine. I was put on a stretcher and my bike and me were loaded into the ambulance. Fortunately the closest hospital was about 1km away so it was a short journey. The doctor assessed me and was happy that I was stable enough to be sent for x-rays.
The x-rays showed there were no breaks or fractures, just extreme muscle damage on my lower back from the whiplash etc...As I write this 4 days later, my back is still sore but a lot better after a few sessions at the Chiropractor, rest at home, lots heat/cold treatment and of course drugs. I realize now, how blessed I am to have survived such a crash, not have any other major injuries, have a group of fantastic friends and a wonderful wife. My bike surprisingly came out unscathed just a slightly buckled rear rim and a bent rear derailer. The driver was arrested as besides breaking the rules of the road and riding in the emergency lane his taxi had no license plates on etc...
|The wheels of destruction|
Thanks once again to everybody that assisted me, especially the Checkers road biking group they really are a special group of individuals.