Last Friday, I was hit by a car on my bike. First time. Ever. I’m totally fine. A bit shaken up. Heading down Sunset Street (my first time, coincidentally, taking Sunset all the way South from 9th Ave. since the bridge has re-opened), in the right lane of two available southbound lanes.
Crossing the railroad tracks south of Ken Pratt on a 90 degree angle as I always do (which forces me left into the lane), I was hit hard on the left in the knuckles by a black SUV – think it may have been an Acura.
Totally lost my balance, but, due to ( I believe) many many years of bike handling skills was able to right myself, though an inexperienced rider would have likely gone down.
As I did so as I was “thrown” into the left (still Southbound) lane, just in front of a silver car who was HONKING at me (I’m super lucky he wasn’t going just a tad faster, then I likely wouldn’t be writing this now).
So, getting into the far right hand lane again, completely shaking and freaked out, weird thing – NOBODY stopped.
Not the car that hit me (it was a fairly loud hit) nor anyone who saw it. Weird?
And now that I’ve had a chance to process my little bike/car conflict, I realize that no one stopped because no one saw or knew that I was hit. The silver car in the left lane that honked at me and slowed down surely wondering why I was seemingly, A) drunk and practically falling over on the bike, and, B) in the left hand lane on my bike wasn’t aware that there had been an impact. Likely the only one who knew that she hit me was the SUV driver (who could possibly have been oblivious?) and me.
How often does this happen? How can we make track crossing safer for cyclists?
And who would hit someone and not stop?? After days of processing, and in avoidance of that intersection and still with bruised knuckles, I think that only someone who didn’t know she just hit someone wouldn’t have stopped. Hopefully.
Three bruised knuckles, but I’d call it a pretty damned lucky day to be able to talk/write about it . . .
Be safe – and make good choices (and try not to pass cyclists when you’re driving a car!)
(Editor’s note: I ride this crossing at least once a week, as a main north-south corridor; there is no bike lane here, per the Google Maps photo. The only choice as a cyclist is to take the lane. This SUV should not have been attempting to pass a bike within the lane.)