So yesterday at exactly 3:20pm I was involved in accident while riding towards Kisii from Nairobi. It was one of those no pressure kind of personal business rides as my target was to get to Kisii at 6pm after which I was to ride back to Nairobi at night. I do this often.
This is exactly how I went down:
I had just passed Duka Moja's CRBC and the railway Bridge where there are bumps. I started ascending the steep hill towards Ntulele. I passed three cars just after the bumps and as I turned right where there's an approximately 1km long stretch of a 3 lane highway, I was on the climbing lane because of discipline and habitual riding.
Halfway up the stretch, there was a group of people on the left side of the road with two motorcycles parked on the roadside facing my direction (downhill). I saw the motorcycle that was in the front flash its headlight and thinking that it was the usual greetings from Superbike enthusiasts, I waved the biker's two finger salute with my left hand. Suddenly, I noticed that the bike was moving towards the road so I hooted as I swerved to the right.
Unfortunately, the guy sitting on the bike and his mates were in the process of being taught how to ride. He was a young masai man who later introduced himself as Alex. He had just switched on the bike when I saw his light appear to flash. When he noticed my fast approaching bike hoot, he panicked and was unable to stop the bike as it started drifting downhill towards the road directly onto my path. He let go of the Handlebars and attempted to jump off the bike in vain.
Back to me. I had already swerved the bike but now it's already moving onto the second lane towards third and outermost lane. At this time, I am literally less than 10 meter away pushing my bike further into a steep lean well aware that I was just about to collide with the bike. It was only a matter of how much contact there was going to be. By the time my front wheel hit the other bike's front wheel, I had already leaned so much that my left footpeg had been broken by the tarmac meaning that the bike was already crashing anyway... The impact spun my bike clockwise on the right side and tossed me in front of the bike sliding on the tarmac uphill in the tucked crash position with the bike following closely behind.
Afraid that the bike would hit me (thanks to my endless hours of YouTube videos on bike accidents) I looked back only to see my bike airborne and about to fall on me. I streched my left hand to the ground to create drag and change my trajectory, a move which helped me get missed by the falling bike with centimeters to spare. I hurt my left hand badly by so doing but it was worth it.
When I finally stopped skidding on tarmac, my bike was off the road on the extreme right side past the oncoming traffic lane. For some reason, the angle sensor hadn't switched it off so I quickly rushed to it and hit the kill switch. The guys who were with Alex left him lying in the middle of the road and came to check on me, amazed that I was actually on my feet. A sharp pain was throbbing my left hand and for the next hour or so, it was numb and almost immobile..
The three vehicles which I had passed at the bottom of the hill stopped at the scene. The drivers talked to me but were unwilling to help take Alex to hospital. The masai guys were sympathetic to me and they even let me take pictures of Alex, the bikes and the scene of the accident for insurance purposes. Alex neither had a riding license nor insurance for his training bike. My bike is comprehensively insured so I wasn't moved much by that information. The other bike was used to take Alex towards Duka Moja for treatment while the other guys made Alex's bike disappear. I later found out that I was very lucky to have been left at the scene alone without a proper beating. I am not sure about how effective such a beating would have been as I was fully geared up.
I was wearing my RST Pro Series riding boots, Berik leather pants, a Thor body armor with hands, chest and back protection, my Kawasaki Hand Gloves and my very trustworthy Schuberth helmet. I type in the details because despite the crash, I walked away with only only self inflicted soft tissue injury and a very tiny (3cm diameter) friction burn.
Alex was not wearing any protective gear. He was wearing gumboots. The point of impact was quite beneficial to him as he only sustained a shin injury when his bike spun around and hit him. He had some noticeable wound on his hand from his fall and he kept holding on to his lip as I attempted to talk to him thereafter.
I called my brother and informed him about the accident. I then posted on two WhatsApp groups including the Waiyaki Way Nyumba Kumi and my friend Arnold Kilonzo's send off group that I had crashed. I was afraid that my phone would be stolen before I got any assistance. I received endless calls for the next three hours. I have lost count at 226 as that only between 3:30pm and 5pm. I obviously couldn't answer most of them. When the news got out, those seeking to help and those looking for information about my accident called me. I appreciated all of them but I learned that after an accident, it would be prudent not to call someone immediately unless you are attempting to offer them actual assistance. I was lucky to have received such assistance.
My good friend Veer Patel was informed about my accident either by Faith Kidjo or Kui Bett. He hired a truck from Narok to come to my rescue at the scene of accident. Djo Thefu stopped all he was doing and rode from Nairobi to come save my ass for the umpteenth time. Phyllis, my friend made arrangements to have police officers from Ntulele dispatched to the scene. The police officers were the first to arrive at around 5pm, followed shortly by the truck sent my way by Veer.
They loaded my bike on their cruiser and drove me to Ntulele police station where the report was recorded. Veer's truck then took me to Narok where Veer Patel was on standby to take me to hospital. It was confirmed that I didn't have a fracture and was given an painkiller injection and some tablets to take home with me.
I write this detailed narrative for your curiosity and my records, Sonic was just about to clock 42,000kms. That makes this my first major accident after about 100,000kms of riding within two years and three months. An enviable safety record which could probably be the best or one of the best amongst riders across the world. But I was very lucky today. It could have been worse. My friend Arnold lost his life a week ago after a collision with a bodaboda in between the two speed bumps near the turn-off to the Makueni Governor's office. I still mourn him as we prepared to lay him to rest on Saturday. Accidents continue to happen even to the best drivers and riders out there.
As I sleep at Narok tonight, courtesy of my friend Veer Patel, I thank God for the gift of life. I am grateful for #Sonic my beloved bike. I thank my family members and friends for the support that they gave me today. I thank everyone in Kenya and on YouTube who took time to teach me the many riding skills and tips which culminated in the way I rode today. Y'all saved my life and I appreciate each one of you.
#Sonic is extensively damaged. A quick inspection at the police station reveled that there was damage to the following :
The bike is comprehensively insured but there's no telling how long the repair process will take seeing that all parts have to be imported from other continents. The bike was started at the police station and the engine didn't sound too unhealthy. I hope that the insurance company will let me do the repairs as soon as they inspect the bike to avoid dragging the process for months. I honestly hope that the bike shall not be written off.
I'll sleep tonight thanking God for the gift of life. I spoke to my daughter earlier tonight and had a really jolly conversation. She hadn't been told about the accident at the time.