Tuesday, July 22, 2008

My brush with death...sort of...

...not really, but it was enough to get me shaken up.

I was biking home from Filmmakers in Oakland. I already had a bad night, realizing I had previously only captured video, with no audio...rendering my time spent there useless. The roads were wet and I was flying down Negley to get home. There was a green light ahead at East Liberty Boulevard and I was racing towards it.

When I was about 20 feet from the intersection, a cop car accelerating toward the same intersection with lights flashing suddenly appeared on the perpendicular street and turned on its siren. I hit my brakes, fishtailed and skidding off the the left to avoid what I thought was going to be a side collision. The cop car stopped (slowed down) in time and turned left to go down the direction in which I had come. I really thought that I was going to at least wipe out horribly in the middle of the intersection. I sat there for a second to get my bearings.

I haven't (knock on wood) been in an accident yet with another person/vehicle. I mildly wiped out on the Hot Metal Ped Bridge twice...once from ice, once from taking a turn too quickly on the wet. That's about it. I'm not looking forward to my first actual accident, since I'm sure that's going to happen at some point. Getting doored or run off the road. Anyway, my bike riding has been blessedly safe thus far.

Maybe I should be more careful at night and maybe I should not fly through intersections for this reason, but I don't understand why a cop wouldn't just keep their siren on well before an intersection? It doesn't help when your momentum is already carrying you through what is a solid green light, especially if you are on a bike.

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