How often do grown-up cyclists have accidents?

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.

On average, do you have an accident.....

Less than every 2000 miles?
2000 - 4000 miles?
4000 - 6000 miles?
6000 - 8000 miles?
8000 miles + or never?
Total votes: 67

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How often do grown-up cyclists have accidents?

Postby minkie » 28 Nov 2008, 9:17pm

I get the impression users on this forum tend to be experienced, sensible riders who look after their bikes. They should have a much lower accident risk than cyclists in general.

Let's say an accident is an impact while riding that causes you injury.

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Postby Cunobelin » 28 Nov 2008, 9:43pm

Normally the day after filling in an internet poll saying they haven't had one for ages!

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Postby meic » 28 Nov 2008, 10:55pm

I think you may have set the mileages too low in your options.
I certainly hope so. :)
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Postby kwackers » 28 Nov 2008, 11:10pm

meic wrote:I think you may have set the mileages too low in your options.
I certainly hope so. :)

I thought they were set too high!

Guess it depends on what you call an accident...

In the last year I've fallen off going over a slippery kerb, fallen into some mud when I couldn't release my spd's fast enough, been knocked off on an island by a car cutting across me, been sideswiped by a buffoon who decided for no reason to move left into the cycle lane and clipped a couple of car mirrors for similar reasons (usually deliberately I might add).

Difficult to put mileage on a years riding but under 2000 I'd say.

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Postby eileithyia » 29 Nov 2008, 8:49am

As you say depends on the accident and how serious.

x 3 altercations with cars = x 1 broken wrist, x 1 very bruised hip, x 1 collar bone/scapula requiring surgery and certainly worst so far.

Other accidents almost too numerous to number but only one resulting in a break; small bone in my hand due to twisting force, I was out of the saddle with hands on the brake hoods when something jammed my wheel bringing me off.

Over the years have picked up a fair share of road rash.... coming off on gravelly corners, whilst off roading, and negotiating ice, touching a wheel...... etc.

All these have been over a career in cycling spanning 30 years, where the lowest yearly mileage was around 5,000 and the highest total 11,000.
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Postby thirdcrank » 29 Nov 2008, 9:12am

Since learning to ride a bike at the age of 13 in 1958 I've had two collisions with motor vehicles reported to the police.

The first was in 1959 when I was knocked off by the driver of an overtaking lorry who passed too close and then drove over my back wheel. I was more or less unhurt and as I was only 14, presumably it does not count for this poll.

The second was 30 December 1985 when a car driver emerged from a motorway exit slip onto Tingley roundabout without giving way to me and broke my right thumb when the bars were twisted from my grip. ( I also lost a lot of skin from my hip and ankle bone.)

I've fallen off countless times, both through tangles with other riders and more often completely unassisted. :oops:

I've never really been one for mileage charts etc so I cannot add to the research....

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Postby lauriematt » 29 Nov 2008, 9:48am

in terms of time...i generally i have an accident maybe twice - three times a year.....

only minor accident sthough like maybe slipping over

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Postby Mick F » 29 Nov 2008, 10:27am

As a yoof, I fell off a great deal, "Playing" on bikes with mates resulted in lots of spills and thrills. One of which had me hitting the back of a car stopped at traffic lights whilst not looking where I was going.

As an adult in the late 1970's, I was thrown off by my dog!
Then more recently, I had a spectacular spill caused by a spectacular pot hole.
Mick F. Cornwall

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Postby 7_lives_left » 29 Nov 2008, 3:52pm

Oh goody, an opportunity to list my war wounds!

The following are just estimates because I don't keep a millage diary.

I have been cycling as an adult for about 27 years. I only average about 3000 miles a year,, about two fifths of that is commuting/utility cycling. I go about 18 months between 'incidents' involving injury which puts me, just, in the 4000-6000 category. I would say I was pretty accident prone.

I have had two serious injuries, a broken pelvis each occasion. I have badly strained or broken small bone in my right wrist on three occasions (those count as minor). The rest have been minor grazes to the hands, elbows, knees or top of the thighs.

Only one of these injuries, the most serious, involved a collision with another vehicle. There have been a few occasions where quick reactions from car drivers have saved be from being run over after I have come off the bike.

The other serious injury was the result of me going over the handle bars after hitting debris in the road (a fallen tree branch across the width of the lane). I didn't see the hazard because I was drafting a large 4x4 that eats debris like that for breakfast. Indeed I suspect it may even have knocked the branch from the gutter and in to the roadway. It was stupid to have been drafting the 4x4 at all, but I was seeing red because it had just cut in rather too closely after overtaking me against on coming traffic and I felt like sitting in the drivers rear view mirror just to prove a point. Don't let the bar stewards wind you up...

Two of the three wrist breaks were pratfalls while attempting a track stand at giveway lines, once with toe clips, once with clip in's.

The rest have all been going after loosing traction, usually while making a turn. Rain, road salt, gravel, ice, oil, just going too fast for the conditions.

All my injuries have occurred close to home (3 miles?) on the daily commute despite the bulk of my (recreational) cycling taking place further away from home.

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Postby unknown » 29 Nov 2008, 6:02pm

Sometimes it doesn't matter how careful you are, some idiot will pull out on you....

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Postby dan_b » 29 Nov 2008, 7:47pm

This time last year, canned it on a wet downhill bend while attempting to avoid the cyclist in front who'd slid out. I have basically no idea how far I've ridden since then, though.

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Postby drossall » 29 Nov 2008, 8:26pm

8000 miles is not far between accidents?

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Postby unknown » 30 Nov 2008, 2:34pm

It was me that chose the under 2000 miles option. :S

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Postby lindow_man » 1 Dec 2008, 10:46am

I'm in my 50s. I have always cycled regularly, but over the years this has varied between regular long-distance touring, as much road bike action as family duties allow, commuting & pottering around town, riding with young kids, etc. I really have no idea of how this could be related to a typical yearly mileage, but in all that time as an adult cyclist I can only recall two actual accidents (I wouldn't count the handful of embarrasing stationary topples during the transition to clipless pedals).

One of these was while touring in France - looking over "wrong" shoulder to check traffic behind I veered & clipped grass verge at speed with spectacular results. Wrote off a wheel but I was intact.

The other was downhill at high speed on a mountain bike fitted with front lowrider rack which came loose and came into contact with knobbly tyres - once again with spectacular results. Face-tarmac interaction. Lots of blood, ambulance, hospital, etc. The kids were very impressed with the scars. Luckily my face cushioned the impact so there was no lasting damage.

Note, I managed both of these incidents without any help from other road users. I have had numerous terrifyingly near-misses with cars, vans, lorries, busses - but the buggers haven't got me yet. Does this say anything about the way I ride? Does it say anything about the nature of luck/fate/destiny? Who knows?

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Postby EdinburghFixed » 1 Dec 2008, 11:36am

I've never needed medical assistance (unless my girlfriend pulling splinters from my derrière after my first and last shot on a velodrome counts!)

But in 2008 I have come off five times:
  • back axle sheared joining a gyratory, spilling me on the back of my head in front of the cars (got a helmet after this)
  • planted the left pedal on the kerb filtering (ironically not on the fixed-wheel bike!)
  • first day on the fixed wheel, trying to see how fast I could go, it threw me onto the verge...
  • I got right-hooked by an impatient motorist at a junction
  • I stacked it at the velodrome and burned through my shorts and dignity!