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Old 07-08-2007, 07:20 PM   #1
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Thumbs down Crashed on Lucas Calley Road...but have no memory of what happened

First off let me say that I don’t have full insurance on the bike. I had planned to switch to full at the end of this month when a ticket dropped off, but obviously that plan has been cancelled.

So it all happened on the evening of June 12th, 2007. I had planned to do a Skaggs run the following day, Wed, June 13th. My original plan was to ride up North on June 12th after work, so I could be a little closer to the starting point of the ride the next morning. So I got home, geared up, and left my house around 7pm. I slabbed it up North on 101 until I got to Lucas Valley Road. My route was to go LVR, Nicasio, past the cheese factory, and then past Stafford Lake and into Novato to visit my Girlfriend. After that I was to head up to Petaluma to sleep at a buddy’s house. I exited and started attacking the twisties. I got to the really tight section of LVR…it’s an uphill section with very tight turns…close to the big rock. I don’t know if I’m describing it correctly. This is where I went down.

Here’s the thing though, I HAVE NO MEMORY OF THE ACCIDENT. I was cruising along, and all of a sudden I woke up in the hospital. I don’t know if I hit a car, if a car hit me, if I hit the curb, if I slipped on some oil or gravel in a turn, if I hit or tried to avoid hitting an animal….no clue. That’s what’s really disappointing, since I have no memory I haven’t really learned anything from the accident.

So I woke up in Marin General in a complete haze. I guess someone had called my parents because there they were. Apparently I had some serious issues with injuries in my ribs and heart, and so they took my by helicopter to the intensive care unit at Stanford Medical Center. This is where I hung out for the next 2 weeks.

The doctors said that I tore my aorta…and that 80% of people who have this injury, never survive long enough to get to the hospital…damn…I’m so fucking lucky! I also broke 5 ribs, and fractured my hips. So after 2 weeks at Stanford they decided they didn’t want to operate on my aorta and that it was healing up just fine. My Dad, who is a doctor, thought it was bullshit and took me to Kaiser in SF. While here they told me that I DID indeed need surgery and they sent me to a specialist at UCSF. I had the 7 hour operation on July 3rd, and they released me from the hospital tonight, July 7th. Now I am hanging out at my parent’s house in Novato, just recuperating from the accident. It should be another 2 weeks or so before I can go back to work or have any kind of a normal life.

I was wearing FULL GEAR during the accident, and I have no road rash whatsoever. Perhaps if I had been casual and wearing jeans, and tennis shoes, I would still be in the hospital. Unfortunately the paramedics had to cut the gear off me. The bike still starts, but is severely messed up. The entire front end it gone and there are scratches on top of the gas tank indicating that it may have flipped over? There aren’t many scratches on the side fairings, no damage to the foot controls on both sides…really not sure what happened.

Interesting side story: While I was locked away in the Stanford ICU for 2 weeks, I experienced something that not many people really want to experience. The elderly patient next to me, separated from me by just a curtain and some machines, died. Yes I was napping, and awoke to the sounds of nurses and doctors yelling and compressing his chest, and using the crash paddles, and yelling, “Clear!” Wonderful. It took 2 hours while they tried to revive him (he actually died once and came back to life…this I could hear from the “beep beep” of the heart monitor). Once he was gone they wheeled me out of the room and into another one, and while coming out of the room I had to see his entire family standing just outside the room, huddled together and crying. It was rough…

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Old 07-08-2007, 07:21 PM   #2
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my mirrors and speedometer came off cleanly in one fucking peace...how?

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Old 07-08-2007, 07:52 PM   #3
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WOW. Hard to respond to this.
You are very lucky. At this point it is not needed to blame what caused the accident, just make sure you recover.
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Old 07-08-2007, 08:37 PM   #4
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Whoa, you tore your aorta? Wonder if that was from G forces or the damage caused to your ribs. Either way, you're one lucky guy. Glad to hear you're alive. Were there any witnesses around? Like who called the ambulance?
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Old 07-08-2007, 08:47 PM   #5
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Doctor says they aorta tore was from extreme deceleration...
Somebody driving by found me and called the ambulance. Luckily I had one of those "in case of emergency" contact list in my wallet, and so my parents were able to meet me at the hospital pretty quickly...
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Old 07-08-2007, 11:49 PM   #6
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if your aorta tore and ribs cracked most likely it was from hitting something some sort of blunt trauma.. like in some car accidents when the driver hits the steering wheel hard enough it can break the ribs and tear the aorta.. you got lucky that you survived cuz it only takes a few mins before you bleed out to death. and since you cant remember how it happened .. im thinking its retrograde amnesia..well i hope you recover soon
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Old 07-09-2007, 01:06 AM   #7
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I almost wonder if you hit a deer
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Old 07-09-2007, 01:20 AM   #8
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I almost wonder if you hit a deer

fur, blood, or poo on the bike would be that tattle tell no?
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Old 07-09-2007, 10:27 AM   #9
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Do you plan on still riding or are going to give up riding since it was an extermly close call. You are really one lucky guy. someone is looking out for ya.
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Old 07-09-2007, 10:34 AM   #10
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Did you get a copy of the CHP report yet?

Torn aorta? You are one lucky SOB- buy a lottery ticket and split the winnings with the flight nurses who brought you in.
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Old 07-09-2007, 11:01 AM   #11
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I checked the bike...no sign of blood or fur...so I didnt hit a deer.
Yes I still plan on riding once I get 100% better...but this experience and all the pain that has gone with it has changed my outlook significantly.
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Old 07-09-2007, 11:47 AM   #12
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I'm not a religious man, but god bless you my friend.
Let's all be careful out there (not to say you WEREN'T being careful.)
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Old 07-09-2007, 12:00 PM   #13
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Glad you are still alive. I suspect the momentum from your body going over the bars is what caught & tore off your mirrors and instrument cluster. Possible that your hitting the windscreen caused the damage to your aorta and/or chest area.

God bless! Hope your recovery is swift!
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Old 07-09-2007, 12:04 PM   #14
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Chris, you are one lucky SOB.

Get well man!
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Old 07-09-2007, 12:24 PM   #15
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Glad you are recovering. Torn aorta...and you are here to tell about it, talk about a mixture of luck, bad for the accident and good to survive.

Mabye the CHP report will shed light on it.
You must have hit something head on. Paint transfer? Wood particles from a fence post?

Heal up. Let us know if the cause is determined.
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