I’ve been wearing ROAD iD since I started cycling about six or seven years ago. I always wondered what would happen in an accident. I sometimes thought,it's got to be simple to just tell people, "Hey, this is my name." I never really thought about it further until the morning of February 6, 2019.
That morning I set off on a bike ride near the eastern shore of Maryland. About two and a half miles after leaving the house, I was struck from behind by a full size Ford F-150 pickup truck doing about 40 miles an hour.
I remember the accident vividly. It was the noise that first caught my attention. It sounded like someone had dropped a trash dumpster on the road, but I couldn’t really see anything. I was flying through the air— I would see sky, then trees, then sky, then trees. I was really disoriented and my brain was trying to figure out what was going on.
Next thing I know, I was face down in the ditch on the side of the road.
When I finally kind regained consciousness and collected my thoughts, I realized what had happened. My bike had come to rest about three or four feet away in a tree. The entire left side of my body was seemingly on fire with pain. I did a quick assessment, wiggle my toes, see if I could move, see if there was anything that seemed drastically wrong and I felt comfortable enough to at least try to roll over onto my back.
I noticed there was a couple that had stopped the truck and they were walking towards me. It was a couple in their eighties, the man was driving and all I could hear the woman saying was, "We never saw you. We never saw you. We never saw you." I was on a straight road, not a cloud in the sky, nobody else on the road, and I was wearing a high visibility cycling jersey. I couldn't have been more visible. The impact struck my left side— the same side where my cell phone was in my jersey pocket. cell phone was actually in my left hand jersey pocket over my hip and it took the initial impact of the truck, hit the cell phone, and bent the cell phone.
As I lay in the ditch, just trying to collect my wits about me, I couldn't think straight. I asked the woman if she had called an ambulance yet. She said she didn’t know how to use her cell phone. I reached in my jersey pocket and pulled out my phone—the screen was destroyed and the phone broken. I asked to use the woman’s phone and somehow I managed to dial 911 for her. I handed it back to her as she tried to direct the emergency services to the accident scene.
As I lay there listening to the woman basically give the wrong directions to the emergency personnel over the phone, a retired police officer approached the scene, got out of his car and came over and knelt beside me. I was still having a hard time comprehending what was going on, I’m not sure if I was in shock. All I could do was ask him to please contact my wife. He asked me what her number was and I just remember thinking,"I can't remember what her cell phone number is. Oh my God."
And then I remembered that I was wearing my ROAD iD. My wife’s number was on my ID and the retired officer was able to call her directly from the accident scene.
It was pretty comforting to hear my wife's voice and to hear the gentleman explaining that I had been hit by a truck, but I'm okay, and the ambulance was on its way. He was able to direct her to the accident scene and she met me at the hospital as the ambulance brought me in.
When I needed it, ROAD iD was there for me. The peace of mind of talking to my wife as I was laying in the ditch, just wondering what was going to happen to me, was really reassuring.