This story is about Andrew J. Bernstein, a cyclist who was hit by a car while riding his bike to his fiancé’s house. Instead of helping him, the driver fled the scene. Andrew has shared his story to make people aware of how important it is to drive with caution and not to escape a “hit and run” situation. Andrew was found by another cyclist, who had also been a victim of a hit and run.
“To the driver who hit me and ran away: The forceful impact sent force vectors through my body, breaking my right clavicle and exploding my left shoulder. He broke all my ribs. And my sternum. My two lungs collapsed. You broke my left ankle, you broke my tibia and fibula, and you broke my femur. You crushed my pelvis and caused internal bleeding so severe that my blood pressure did not stabilize for days, even after emergency surgery and liter after liter of blood transfusion,” wrote Andrew.
He added, “you fractured the vertebrae in my neck and back and damaged my spinal cord, paralyzing my left leg and compromising my bladder and intestine function. That would have been enough, the lifelong trauma imposed on an unsuspecting 34-year-old man on his way home to spend the night with his fiancé after an afternoon of training for the season’s last big bike race. But you are a special kind of cruel, so you left. You let me die.”
And Andrew would have died if Tim Gillach, the cyclist and insurance salesman from Front Rage, Colorado, had not found him and called emergency services. Andrew was airlifted to a hospital, and after seeing the severity of his injuries, they decided to transfer him to a larger one. His body was so injured that he would need at least seven specialists operating on him to save him.
Andrew survived. However, he had to go through more than 17 surgeries, long days in the intensive care unit with a tube in his throat, unable to eat, and hallucinations due to severe pain.
Any of us could easily be him. To read Andrew’s story in its entirety, click here. Here at Karns & Karns, we proudly support SAFE, and its Vision Zero mission in Los Angeles. Drive carefully, someone else’s life may very well depend on it.
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