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Cyclist severely injured in crash in Woodside

Original post made on Jun 1, 2011

A 67-year-old bicyclist from Redwood City was admitted to Stanford Hospital with a severe brain injury requiring emergency surgery on Sunday, May 29. The cyclist crashed on Woodside Road near the intersection with Northgate Drive in Woodside in what a witness said was a solo accident, according to a San Mateo County Sheriff's Office report.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, June 1, 2011, 10:48 AM

Comments (18)

Posted by Skywood, a resident of Woodside: Skywood/Skylonda
on Jun 1, 2011 at 12:30 pm

I hope the sheriff checked the witness' car for marks: when a passing car knocked me off my bicycle on 84, the driver - flagged down by a motorcyclist witness - denied involvement until the streaks on his car were matched to my handlebars.
Or maybe Mr Cadet had a medical incident while cycling.


Posted by agree, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jun 1, 2011 at 12:50 pm

I agree with @Skywood. Sounds very suspicious that the car driver was watching a bicyclist through her rearview mirror - unless she was wondering if she just hit him.

My best wishes to a complete recovery for the victim.


Posted by Bob, a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights
on Jun 1, 2011 at 6:04 pm

He might also have had a medical incident that led to the crash. Westbound at that point is uphill, so he was probably only going 10-15 mph (assuming a typical 60+ level of fitness, not Lance Armstrong). Eastbound he could daily have been going 30 or even 40 mph down the hill, but westbound is the slow direction. It's also a wide bike lane, so while it's possible a passing car clipped him that seems unlikely. My uninformed guess is that was either a mechanical incident or a medical problem that caused the crash.

In any event, I hope he makes a speedy and full recovery.

Bob


Posted by Bob, a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights
on Jun 1, 2011 at 6:06 pm

"daily" above should have read "easily", of course. Darn iPad auto-correct.


Posted by Karen, a resident of another community
on Jun 1, 2011 at 7:38 pm

I suspect that the reporter made an error saying that the cyclist was westbound. My husband and I drove by this area at about this time and almost certainly passed the accident scene: a fire truck was being used to block a lane and the shoulder, and a uniformed person was directing traffic. We glanced over and saw a bike on the ground. This was on Woodside Road, just west of Northgate, but (assuming the cyclist was cycling on the right-hand side of the road) the cyclist would have been going east (downhill) and not west (uphill).


Posted by Bob, a resident of Woodside: Woodside Heights
on Jun 2, 2011 at 8:23 am

Eastbound / downhill makes a lot more sense. In that direction, the cyclist was almost certainly going at least 25, maybe as much as 35-40. At that speed, a mechanical failure (tire blow-out, dropped chain, etc, etc) could easily cause a crash which could unfortunately be quite serious, helmet or no helmet.

Bob


Posted by Grandpa-slow, a resident of another community
on Jun 2, 2011 at 9:42 am

I am a cyclist of the same generation as Mr Cadet.
A couple of years ago I suffered an incident of BPPV ( Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo) Luckily I was sitting down at home when it occurred so was not injured. Had I been standing I would have fallen over and I would certainly have crashed if I had been riding my bicycle.
I have since talked to several people, some much younger than me, who have experienced the same thing.
When I hear of cyclists crashing for no apparent reason, I often wonder if this could be the cause.
I wish Mr Cadet a speedy and complete recovery.


Posted by Opus the Poet, a resident of another community
on Jun 2, 2011 at 12:55 pm

There are 3 likely causes for a wreck as described, medical issues, mechanical issues, or a car that brushed the cyclist as it passed. Medical issues are outside my paygrade, but the others are not. It is possible to run over something in the bike lane and get a front blowout which would cause exactly what the witness claimed to see if the rider was very experienced and a good bike handler. Losing a chain on a climb could also cause what happened but not as likely. Other mechanical issues are even less likely as a cause. Which leaves us with the passing car brushed the cyclist causing him to crash. The bad part about this is unless the car was very dirty before the wreck it may be impossible to find what part of the car hit the cyclist.


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 2, 2011 at 2:08 pm

"The bad part about this is unless the car was very dirty before the wreck it may be impossible to find what part of the car hit the cyclist."

The bad part about this is unless the car was very dirty before the wreck it may be impossible to find what part of the car MAY have hit the cyclist.


Posted by Wow, a resident of another community
on Jun 2, 2011 at 5:07 pm

...even when it appears that it was a solo accident, folks are trying to blame it on a car. I hope this man recovers fully - what a terrible accident! But to immediately begin blaming it on a car, when that appears to not be the case, is not only irresponsible, it highlights the knee-jerk attitude that some folks have about bikes on our roads.


Posted by Joe, a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Jun 2, 2011 at 5:17 pm

I agree. This jumping to the possibility of a conclusion about a car's involvement is really beyond the pale.


Posted by In traffic, a resident of another community
on Jun 3, 2011 at 9:48 am

Blaming the car already ? Let me tell you my story. I was driving (in a very large city, residential part of downtown) on a flat one way street on the right lane, less than the 25 miles/hour maximum speed, when suddenly a cyclist appeared in front of me (wrong way , of course) coming from the sidewalk, behind the trees. I hit the breaks and expected to have a frontal collision. The biker ( for a split second) managed to enter the very narrow gap between me and the sidewalk swerving all the way, climbed again the sidewalk wobbling and I watched (from my rear view mirror) in horror as he lost control and crashed on the intersection, attracting the attention of the patrons of a corner cafe as they rush to his aide. He was all right, and I hope it was a lesson to him (though I doubt, with his attitude).
I am horrified by the bikers who ride with their bike wheels close or on the white line dividing the traffic, but half of their BODY is on the car lane. This is specially bad on Juniper serra because in some places the car lane is narrow. Judging distances is not an exact science (and specially difficult for new drivers and the elderly) made even more difficult by curves and sudden shade. It seems to me that bikers who do that are not fully aware of the danger they are putting themselves through or have the all entitlement attitude. ALL users of the road are legally bound to minimize risks. So we don't know what happened is this case but already blaming the driver who could have very well ignored the accident and no one would know, but reported it seems to me a case of bias and paranoia on the part of the posters, as if to say "no good deed goes unpunished". Is this the way


Posted by a family member, a resident of another community
on Jun 4, 2011 at 12:21 pm

I'm a member of Mr. Kadet's family (our name is misspelled in the article).

A couple points you might note:

* The article incorrectly states that he was going westbound up hill; he was riding eastbound, downhill.

* For what it's worth, he was wearing a helmet.

Your speculation is similar to ours and unfortunately, we'll likely never really know exactly what happened. He remains severely injured; we thank you for your well wishes and expressions of support.


Posted by gaijinpl, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jun 7, 2011 at 2:13 pm

I've had a couple of solo crashes that resulted from using one hand to indicate stopping while going downhill. Moral of the story is twofold: 1) I've learned to keep both hands on the bars unless level or uphill (and at safe speeds). 2) Solo accidents can happen for all kinds of reasons....
Woodside eastbound is fast, so the reasons for the accident could easily be medical, mechanical, cyclist error, or driver error.

Best wishes to Mr. Kadet.


Posted by Cyclist, a resident of another community
on Jun 11, 2011 at 6:04 pm

The earlier poster "in Traffic" states that the white line divides traffic.
This is only true in the few cases where there is a defined Bike Lane, in which case a cyclist is required under most, but not all circumstances to ride in the bike lane. Where bike lanes are provided, the adjacent traffic lane is always full width and even if a cyclists rides close to the dividing line it should not represent a hazard.

On most roads, the white fog line separates the roadway from the shoulder and cyclists are never required to ride on the shoulder.
Cyclists, like other vehicles, are entitled by law to operate on the roadway and if "in traffic" finds them riding on the fog line or just to the right of it, he should be thankful that they are politely yielding to him a part of the road to which they are indeed entitled, even though he erroneously believes that he is entitled to use the entire roadway


Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 11, 2011 at 7:20 pm

And cyclists, like all other vehicles, are required by law to move off the roadway whenever they are impeding five or more vehicles behind them.


Posted by Karellen, a resident of another community
on Jun 12, 2011 at 9:53 am

Peter,

Your restatement of CVC 21656 is inaccurate. Here is the correct version:

"On a two-lane highway where passing is unsafe because of traffic in the opposite direction or other conditions, a slow-moving vehicle, including a passenger vehicle, behind which five or more vehicles are formed in line, shall turn off the roadway at the nearest place designated as a turnout by signs erected by the authority having jurisdiction over the highway, or wherever sufficient area for a safe turnout exists, in order to permit the vehicles following it to proceed. As used in this section a slow-moving vehicle is one which is proceeding at a rate of speed less than the normal flow of traffic at the particular time and place."


Posted by in traffic, a resident of another community
on Jun 12, 2011 at 11:46 am

Cyclist,

Juniper Serra Blv HAS a bike lane. It's there so that both cyclists and cars (and pedestrians when warranted) do not mix. Car lanes are narrow, oposite traffic sometimes hits the center, sudden shadows and glare appear and disappear and all drivers and cyclists do not have the same set of skills or the same reaction time. Also, non locals might be unaware of the road's quirks. It is prudent and common sense to separate traffic properly (that is why we have sidewalks, bike lines, lights and traffic signs). Cyclists who purposefully ride on the white divider line with their body out are putting themselves and others at risk for the sake of what? I remind you that BY LAW all people in traffic have the obligation to minimize risks (pedestrians too). And yes, I patiently ride behind groups of bikes, though I could very well demand they get off the road and let me pass . I do all that to minimize risk for all. It would be different if I wasn't smart or if I had have a sense of entitlement . But I don't.


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