2007 Bambi vs. Bandit

Deer causes bike crash on 404 
TheStar.com - News - Deer causes bike crash on 404 
June 30, 2007 
Rachel De Lazzer
Staff Reporter

An accident involving a deer and four motorcyclists on Highway 404 led police to close the southbound lanes until around 11:30 p.m. 
The accident occurred when a deer wandered into the highway near Davis Dr., said Sgt. Rob Michaud with Ontario Provincial Police. One of the motorcyclists hit the deer, which was killed. The motorcyclist was taken to hospital to be treated for non life-threatening injuries, while the other motorcyclists were treated on scene. 

It was a Friday night of the Canada Day long weekend, back on July 30th 2007, and I'd hopped onto my 2001 Suzuki Bandit GSF600s and wandered over to Tim Horton's in Newmarket to meet up with my friends and see what they were up to. Quite a few bikes trickled in and we decided we'd head out for a ride. Where? I didn't care.

Sergei's brand new 2007 GSX-R 1000 with 67km on the odometer.

Jeff on his Repsol Honda

Treyomi showed up on her Ninja 250

Sheri was on a 2004 Ninja 250 as well

Time to gear up and get some gas.

I made the mistake of inviting a couple of guys from Bradford ride with us, and after fuelling up and heading East on Green Lane from Yonge Street, they thought it would be a great idea to do stand up wheelies while in the group. Thanks, but F@$% off and go find some body who appreciates that sort of thing. They took off and we headed North up to Mt. Albert Sideroad and Woodbine to say goodnight to Carrie and Dan, as she was still riding under an M1 License and had to park her RF600 before full dark.

I'm behind the camera for this shot.
The rest of us figured we'd head south down Highway 404, hit the Lawrence ramps on the DVP and head on over to Elements, an all night biker hangout that was sure to have some long weekend action going on, but before heading out, we all said that we'd prefer not to get any tickets, as a couple of us had incurred the wrath of the man and had accumulated some yellow toilet paper as a result. So we'd head south on Woodbine, across Green Lane and then continue south on the 404 right on down to Lawrence East... Or so we thought...

Jeff was in the lead in the left lane track and I was riding one position behind him in the right track closest to the guardrail, and we were taking it easy in the right hand lane when I spotted a deer on the other side of the guardrail on the right hand side. I used to clutch hand to point it out to the riders behind me, but with one huge vault it was over the guardrail on on the road in front of Jeff and I. As there were vehicles in the lane to his left, he got on the brakes hard and fast as did I. If you can imagine it, his taillight came hurtling back towards me on my left, the deer was now in the right hand side of the lane and partly on the shoulder, and all I saw at this point was my headlight illuminating less and less of the road and more of his left shoulder and forequarters until the point of impact at which point my helmet slapped my windscreen and I become concussed.

When I slipped and slid back into a conscious state, I felt myself being restrained and secured to a backboard with a head and neck restraint, before everything faded into blackness.

I remember waking in the ambulance while being rushed to South Lake Regional in Newmarket, where the paramedic asked me my name and a few other questions, but I felt myself slipping back into unconsciousness only to wake up to the bright lights of an emergency room where I'd been hooked up to the heart monitor and it was merrily displaying my heart rate and blood oxygen level.

I distinctly remember starting the day with more on... ???

I think he'll make it, Doctor

Now I was fully awake with a great view of the ceiling, and I had the attention of a nurse asking me my name and if I knew where I was. I was told that I was waiting for examination by a doctor and had to remain on the back board for the time being.

Kierstan tell them to pull the plug... 

My friend Kierstan had rushed to the hospital as soon as she had heard the news from some mutual friends, and with her help, after a wait of about 45 minutes, I got out of that cursed backboard. I've a fear of close confinement, call it claustrophobia if you like, but when my legs, arms and neck are bound, I get into an awful tizzy and lose higher brain function. :)

Anyhow, we had another hour or so to wait, when they came in to collect me via wheelchair for X-Rays.

Once the X-Rays were done, I got wheeled back down to emergency, and waited for the doctor. And waited, and got bored.

That used to be a perfectly good t-shirt... 
Once I found out that the riders behind me had been checked and released without any major injuries, I became quite happy that I was alive and kicking, with nothing worse than some bruises, road rash, injured ankle and lower leg, but otherwise fine.

There is such a breeze... 

These jeans might have made decent shorts if they hadn't cut them quite so high up one side... 

He's dead Jim! Sulu got his Tricorder, I got his wallet.

Hit a deer on my motorcycle and lived to tell the tale!
At last the staff let me have more than one visitor, and my concerned friends had come up to the hospital to ensure that everyone in the group was okay, and to return some of my equipment that thy had been holding for me. My camera, cellphone, and other odds and ends.

Speaking of camera, I powered it on and cycled through a few pictures, the most recent of which appear below, and I asked my friends who had taken them? They had no idea, and I have to admit I was a bit miffed at how they got onto the camera.

bambi didn't make it
So I couldn't figure out why someone would take a picture at this angle, when I saw the toe of a riding boot and zoomed in to get more detail on it.

Have a look at the toe of the boot in this shot...
That is the toe of my left Alpinestar Web Goretex boot you are looking at
I had taken these three shots and had no recollection of it whatsoever! I asked one of the riders that had been there at the accident scene if they could tell me what had happened, as I obviously had some blanks to fill in...

"It took awhile to find a safe place to get my kickstand down, but when I had you had kicked the bike off the top of your leg, had gotten up and were wandering around and asking if everyone was alright, taking pictures, then when the ambulance and fire departments arrived, they couldn't get you to sit or lie down, so they strapped you onto the backboard while you were standing up, then loaded you onto the gurney and into the ambulance." 

I'm not a very good photographer it would seem
Yeah... It was kinda tough to take it at the time, that I'd gotten a concussion at the scene and was suffering the classical short term memory loss.

Wikipedia has this to say about mild Traumatic Brain Injury aka Concussion:
Post-traumatic amnesia, in which events following the injury cannot be recalled, is a hallmark of concussions.[18]

To this day I can recall only the point of impact as I described it above, a short video if you like,  of the headlight revealing the deer, then as I got closer, less and less of it, until a sharp image of a the furry shoulder that I was about to collide with remains. 

My guess is that at the point of impact my helmeted head had snapped forward and struck the trailing edge of my windshield, instantly concussing me. The bike went down and slid, and the evidence is that I slid with it as you can see by the marks on my gear and on the bike in photos below. Thirty minutes of my life that I can't recall. 

I may have lost some memory, mobility and some gear, but I am very grateful for the support of my friends and most especially that of Kierstan who sat with me throughout my stay in that hospital room and eased my fears about the condition of the others who had been riding with me, and had been an accomplice in my escape from the backboard (The statute of limitations must have run out, as this event took place 11 years ago as I type this. I'm pretty sure they gave up the manhunt {womanhunt?} and you can come out of hiding now.) :) 

The gear can be replaced, but you can't replace friends like these. 

Slip slidin' away... 

I still have this jacket. It has an inner and outer shell, and the inner shell was untouched. 
I toured with this jacket for years longer, after I'd sewn up the worst of the damage with a needle and thread, as it was a two layer jacket, and only the outer waterproof layer was damaged in the spill. The inner mesh jacket and armour was untouched.

T-Short ventilated for summer comfort

I may need something new to hold my phone. I may also need a new phone to go with something new. 

Getting those off is going to hurt!

Eleven years later these boots are still waterproof and I use them for Spring and Fall riding. :P

Yeah, knees, calf and feet. 

It still works! This was the best cellphone I ever owned, Sony Ericsson ftw!

The helmet that saved my noggin

This is my favourite picture from this set. 

He's a goner. Check his wallet. 

CL Towing - These guys wanted to charge me $750 for towing my bike FURTHER from my home in Newmarket, and storing it outside in a fenced in yard. What a rip off!

Stephen's Honda VFR 800 Interceptor

Later on that weekend, I got taken out to dinner by a number of friends who were happy that I survived the experience.

4 years later it's ready to roll on the road again as a rat bike. :)

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