Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Ontario, Canada
Some Bad News with a good ending
I was recently involved in an a crash that resulted in my CBR500R being written off and me spending 3 days in hospital. I am 69 years old and have been riding motorcycles since age 16. In that 53 years I have owned 12 different motorcycles and have never had a previous accident.
The accident occurred on a railroad crossing that is somewhat unusual in that the gaps between the steel rails that cross the road at right angles are filled in with large planks of wood that are bolted down. The location is well known to me and I always slow and approach with caution since it is poorly maintained and quite bumpy. My speed of approach was below 80kph and the police officer estimated my speed as 75kph.
There is a rise in the road on the approach that makes the surface of the crossing invisible until quite close. On the 12th September I was riding in full daylight at 1:00pm. I followed my usual procedure of shifting down 2 gears and placing more weight on the footrests to stabilize the bike. When I was close to the crossing at the last moment I recall the crossing looking different from normal but I wasn't able to see that one of the large wooden boards had come loose and had rotated and was sticking up about 6 inches. The next thing I remember was the paramedic asking me questions in the ambulance.
I just had the bad luck to be the first to cross after the board became dislodged. The hazard was serious enough for the police to immediately close the road until a Rail work crew could repair the crossing.
Luckily I was wearing most of my protective gear despite it being a hot day. My armoured mesh jacket was badly damaged and my full face helmet was scraped all over but intact. I had a compound fracture of the collar bone (the end exited on the back of my shoulder), a broken big toe and a few minor scrapes where my gloves had worn through. I was sore for a few days but I am almost back to normal now.
The big lesson for me was that being attentive usually pays off but when your luck and skill run out be sure you are wearing the right gear! Here is a picture of my helmet.
The other good news is that I had made numerous improvements to the bike, (especially the suspension) and I was able to retrieve those parts before the bike departed to the wreckers. So if you are looking for upgrades, check out my next posting. The reason I am not keeping the special equipment is that my next ride will be a Yamaha FJ-09!
Honda CBR500RA, Cinelli Pro Estrada, Rocky Mountain Element 30, Honda Accord Sport
Honda CBR250RA, Honda V65 Magna 1100cc, Yamaha 750 Maxim, Lotus Europa