Friday, May 20, 2011

Bike to Work Day - Hit and Run Included

To celebrate Bike to Work Day, I was hit by a truck. For real. To save some typing time, my Facebook post says it all...

Riding home from work today, woman in a pickup truck hits me from behind. Just a few inches from totally taking me out.

Cut on elbow is from the truck itself as it buzzed by. Huge dirt mark washed off before pic taken. Woman turns around looking shocked after hitting me. I make eye contact with a "What the hell look" - and she take
s off. I guess she figured since I didn't crash (I almost did), everything is okay. Insane.

She's lucky the light was green 50 yards ahead or I would have caught her. Two cops were also working traffic duty at the light. I pointed her out, but she was already up the road. I didn't catch her plate number, but did call it in. Cop at the scene basically said without a plate number, not much they can do - which I realize.

I can't comprehend how a person can hit a cyclist, pedestrian, another car - or whatever - then just take off. They literally have no moral compass. Quite sad actually.

Just a small scrape, arm is slightly sore - no big deal. But it's like being grazed by a bullet. Injury is minor, but just a few inches away from some serious hurt.

Fairly ironic considering my blog post from yesterday. Still, for all the years and miles I've ridden, my safety record is off the charts; on the good side. Besides bicycles, same story for motorcycles. I'm either damn lucky or pretty good at staying safe.

She hit me on one of the new "Sharrow" lanes in downtown Seattle. Lanes where cars and bikes share the lane and bikes have the right of way. I usually ride in the center of the lane to block people from trying to squeeze by, but let myself drift a bit the left, so she blows past clipping me in the process. Moronic and dangerous.

Stupid mistake I can forgive. Punching the gas and leaving afterwards I cannot. That is world class lame.

I seriously doubt I'll hear anything further about this. I will be back to full on lane blocking for the next trip.

Ride safe...

05/23/11 Update: This morning I received a call from the Seattle Police Department. Apparently the woman returned to the scene a few minutes after I left.

According to the officer, she seemed genuinely sorry. Said she continued to drive away confused as to what happened (maybe because I didn't crash?). She did receive a ticket for "Inattentive Driving" for clipping me. I also have all info needed for insurance, though besides a scrape on the arm, I'm fine. So no action needed there.

So, still a scary situation - but ends on a more positive note.


  1. Dang!!! Cars quit picking on us bikers!!!!! Angry about this on one side, and the other side sure glad you didn't get all busted up.

  2. Glad you are OK. A military term we use is Danger Close

  3. I did not bike to work to celebrate Bike to Work. Karma is running dark here in North Florida right now, so I'll be off road until I feel the weight lift.

    I hate hearing stories like this, and I completely agree with your observation that too many folks seem to lack a moral compass. Glad you are OK, though. That's all that really matters.

  4. Thanks all. Yeah, it doesn't get any closer then that - having a truck buzz close enough to cut your arm.

    As per my post update - Seattle police called me this morning. The woman actually returned to the scene a few minutes after I left. She wound up getting a ticket after all. A slight positive note to the whole experience.