We never know with certainly when our lives are about to change. Sometimes, change takes place because of our poor decisions, and other times the change is the result of someone else's poor decisions. Bicycle accidents in Colorado are a matter of public concern, and bikes have every right to share the roadways with larger, enclosed vehicles. When a collision occurs, however, it is typically the bicyclist who fares the worst, simply due to the lack of protection against a larger vehicle. A recent collision in Sedgwick County between a bicycle and a semi underscores the point.
A candidate for Sedgwick County Commissioner was riding his bicycle westbound on Colorado 138 on a recent Saturday. A semi was also headed westbound and swerved to avoid a collision with the cyclist as the semi approached the bicycle. Unfortunately, the truck clipped the bicycle, and the avid cyclist ended up in a ditch and severely injured.
He was transported to a local hospital and later airlifted to another one in Denver. Reports indicate that the man broke his hip and leg and several vertebrae. He also suffered a broken pelvis, and several surgeries were planned in the days following the frightening collision. Colorado authorities are continuing to investigate, and as yet, there has been no announcement of any charges.
Bicycle accidents are dangerous under any circumstances. A collision between a big rig and a bicycle rarely ends well for the cyclist. The family of the injured is likely focused on his recovery, and there appears to be a long and difficult road ahead for him. At some point, an assessment may be appropriate to determine whether a personal injury action against the truck driver may be appropriate. Such a legal claim is properly made in Colorado when evidence suggests that negligence caused or contributed to an accident resulting in serious injuries.
Source: Julesburg Advocate, "Commissioner candidate and avid cyclist hit by semi," Oct. 25, 2012