Thoughts on witnessing a motorcycle accident

The guy had just left the motorcycle shop after getting new tires on his bike. I was there to do the same.  I guess nobody told him, and he didn’t know, that new tires are not quite as sticky to the road as they will be after a hundred miles or so.  You have to be careful with new tires until they get scuffed up a little.  He was showing off just a bit, his tires lost traction and down he went.

He got a broken ankle and although helmeted, a minor concussion.  Emergency response was duly summoned, and after what seemed like quite a while a fire engine and a couple of cop cars came screaming to the scene.

The poor guy got little sympathy from the employees and customers at the shop who witnessed his crash.  They blamed him for being too aggressive and not realizing the hazard presented by new tires.  I wondered if they might have been dealing with some psychological defense mechanism in their own minds. There but for the grace of God go I. Maybe they were grappling with the subconscious reality that perhaps they’ve been a bit too aggressive in the past and may have narrowly escaped the same fate.  Rationalizing it all away by blaming him for bringing it on himself might have helped allay fears of a similar mishap in their own future.

I felt sorry for him, and I wasn’t comfortable dwelling on his blame.  This weekend and probably several more were ruined for him in less than a second.  Maybe he’s thanking his stars for how lucky he was though. I hope so, that will make him feel a little better. As motorcycle accident injuries go, he dodged a bullet.

  • Jack

    As a retired Sports med/ortho doc I concur – very lucky, and the helmet prob kept his minor closed head injury from being much worse. Spent lots of time putting motorcyclists bones back together. Of course those were the fairly lucky ones, as others went to neurosurg or morgue.

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