Photos of Mark's bike crash on May 8, 2003
Details: Heading southbound on Hardy in bike lane, passing traffic backed up from light at Southern stopped in southbound auto lane. A Ford F350 (BIG) pickup truck turned through this stopped traffic in the middle of a block to turn into an apartment complex. At the time he entered the bike lane, I was approximately two car lengths from the truck moving about 20mph (32km/h). Things got pretty exciting for a while. I checked my (theoretical) options.
Left - no good - no room between the stopped car and the truck. Right - no good - truck's already entirely across the bike lane and I wouldn't miss him jumping the curb. Guess I gotta hit him.
I ducked my head just at the point of impact (good thing - see below), hitting his heavy-duty mirror mount with my poor helmet (see below). The mirror mount on this truck consists of a V-shaped bar of heavy steel approximately 1/2" thick by 2" wide (1.2cm x 5cm). I pushed this mount into the door with my head (you can clearly see the impact on the helmet photos).
The outcome: An ambulance ride to the hospital taped to a back board. Lots of X-rays. Some world-class sore muscles and some other head trauma-related things (it took me over a day to remember the name of the road I got hit on, even though I've ridden on it 5-10 times a week for over two years).
The physical outcome:
I think I've represented the skin color of every race on earth on that arm (and a couple new ones as well). The funny thing was I didn't know I had hit my arm until the paramedic mentioned it. Only slight evidence of where the helmet was pushed forcefully into my forehead.
The helmet - may it rest in pieces:
Here's a link to an interesting, easy to read website discussing the efficacy of bike helmets.