This is from a guy that works at the same site as me, I thought it worthy of copying and posting here.
Stephen tells us how he survived a serious cycling accident.
What is your involvement in the world of cycling?
Cycling is my passion! As a cycling coach, master qualified bike frame builder and former competitive cyclist, I’m familiar with most things on two wheels. I have helped administer anti-doping controls for the national British Cycling Federation and I am a former National Commissaire.
I usually cycle the 20 mile return journey from my home in Preston into work every day.
What happened to you in you In July?
I was cycling home and decided to take a scenic route, taking the quieter back roads when I felt my bike suddenly jolt to the left.
I can’t remember anything from that point. I know there were no other vehicles involved, so I assume I must have struck a stone in the roadway and came off. The next thing I remember were the voices of the Air Ambulance paramedics . . .
The police estimated that I had lain unconscious on the ground for around 20 minutes before a passing cyclist found me and raised the alarm. I had sustained life threatening injuries. My ankle was cracked and my hip severely bruised, but the worst was my breathing. I had fractured two ribs both at the front and back in the accident; one of which had punctured my lung which caused severe internal bleeding. The paramedics had to act on the roadside by putting two holes in my chest to relieve the pressure and let the air escape. It was pretty grim.
But at least I was alive. Had I not been wearing my helmet, I would have been killed for sure. My helmet saved my life; there is no question about that. The large crack you can see in my protective headwear could have been my skull. I’m very, very lucky even to be here.
How is the road to recovery?
My journey to recovery is still ongoing. After being admitted to hospital a chest drain was inserted, it remained there for three days. After it was removed I was allowed to go home but for the first few weeks the pain in my chest was so bad I was unable to lie down and had to sleep in a chair. I also suffered from benign proximal positional vertigo; a sense of dizziness which affected my balance. As a result of my injuries, I was unable to work for 12 weeks and I am currently on a phased return. I am having regular physiotherapy, but it will still be some months before my ribs really heal and stop hurting.
How do you feel now about cycling?
My passion for cycling is undiminished and my aim is to get back in the saddle, although I dread to think what my wife and daughter will say when I first go out.
What advice have you got for cyclists and pedestrians, especially now the darker nights are here?
My accident should be a lesson to everyone. It’s astonishing how quickly it happened. Despite all my years of experience the accident happened in the blink of an eye and I was only a few moments away from dying. It was only luck and the prompt action of the passing cyclist and paramedics that saved me.
It frightens me when I see cyclists without lights, riding two abreast on busy or narrow roads, but especially not wearing a helmet.
They really are dicing with death. My message is, always wear your helmet and make sure it fits correctly. Any good bike shop can advise you on the best helmet for you and you don’t have to shell out a fortune. Don’t be tempted to buy a cheap copy of a helmet unless you are certain of the quality, it’s just not worth it.
Please remember that cyclists are the most vulnerable of road users. If you are you’re passing a cyclist in the car – be considerate and give cyclists enough space, just like you would when you pass someone on a horse. I don’t want anybody to go through what I have.
Maybe I missed it, but I can't see at which point the helmet prevented his ribs being broken and penetrating his lungs. Or where it prevented the loss of consciousness. Or how riding two abreast puts anyone at greater risk despite we all knowing the exact opposite to be true.