All sports have risks.
I've had a few mishaps in the past couple years. I've been bitten by a dog while running. I've done my share of tripping and falling on trails, and I have the scars on my knees to prove it. And I've been nailed by some serious waves in the ocean that have slammed me to the ocean floor and sprained my shoulder, leaving me with ears full of sand and a new fear and respect for the ocean.
But, a recent incident has made me think pretty hard about the dangers that triathlon training poses.
On Saturday, a 36 year-old woman was killed while riding her bike on PCH in Malibu. The full story is here.
She was reportedly out for a training ride on Saturday afternoon on PCH at Puerco Canyon Road, which is near Pepperdine University. She was passed by some trucks, caught her handlebar on a parked car, which led her to veer into a bus. She was then dragged under the bus.
Now, this wasn't a particularly treacherous stretch of PCH. It's a piece of PCH that I have ridden dozens of times, never feeling particularly unsafe.
What to do..... do we stop riding completely and resort to a life of spin classes and sitting on the bike trainer? Stick with riding on PCH to the west of Trancas Road, where there is far less traffic? Or just recognize there are hazards and do our best to be cautious?
I don't know. Even though I didn't know her, the triathlon community is small enough that one of my teammates was a friend of hers. This definitely hits home and I know this easily could have been me.