I applaud the guts of all the riders who I have heard about in the last few months who have broken their machines and bodies while recreating in the woods on their bikes. I wish you well. I am grateful for whatever insight you provide which will help me to avoid a similar accident and I am sorry for the tremendous price you have paid for your wisdom.
Back in the day we would stop before, during or after our rides to have a safety meeting. These were fun and intoxicating breaks complementing long and happy days in the woods.
Since I have survived youth I find myself trying more and more to evaluate risk and reduce injuries when I ride. I believe that a more analytic form of safety would benefit any rider who has an urge to reduce their own injuries, self evaluate their techniques and improve their riding experience.
A safety director acting in this capacity would organize a reporting and filing system. The safety director would add to SWAMP’s proactive safety program a department that gathers information, tracks accidents and injuries, analyzes them and categorizes factors involved. The information would be useful to all mountain bikers in their development of skills and judgment.
Here is a form adapted that might be a starting point for reporting and analyzing accidents / incidents:
Person Reporting This Accident/Incident: Reporter E-mail
Cyclist Name. Cyclist City. Cyclist State/Province. Cyclist E-mail. Cyclist Date of birth. Cyclist Gender: Male / Female. Cyclist Height. Cyclist Weight.
Cyclist SWAMP Member? YES / NO
Cyclist Rating /Experience:
Date of Accident/Incident: -- mm/dd/yy
Time of Accident/Incident:
Site of Accident/Incident:
Other Protective devices:
Causes / Other Factors: Equipment Failure / Collision
Injuries: (check all that apply): Head
Face Neck Chest Back Abdomen Shoulder Arm Elbow Forearm Wrist –
Hand Pelvis Thigh Knee Calf Ankle Foot Other –
Hospitalized Overnight? YES / NO
Fatal? YES / NO
Description of Accident/Incident: Describe ride, accident/incident, and apparent causes. Include weather, distractions, emotional factors, and medication use. Please give your opinion of cause and suggestions for prevention. Take as much space as needed.