Fortunately, everything turned out okay—this time. But as I lay in the road with car tires swishing pass my head, I knew I’d been lucky. What if I had been hit? Or if I had a concussion? Would anyone know who I was? Would they find my emergency contact information? Would they know I had health insurance? Or that I am a diabetic? Even though I do carry a self-made emergency card inside my seat bag would it be enough? Probably not.
As I struggled home with a broken helmet, bent shifter, ripped tights and a sprained thumb, I realized I needed to be a smarter cyclist. After I cleaned myself up, I searched for my card in the seat bag. It was there—what was left of it—partially disintegrated, water stained and ink-smudged. Sometime over the past few seasons I’d been caught in the rain and apparently my seat bag had been soaked. In short, the card was pretty much useless in case of emergency. Dumb. And, would someone even think to search my seat bag in the first place?
I knew about MedicAlert bracelets and had considered one when diagnosed with diabetes. However, they are rather ugly, pricey and seemed so, well, medical. Made me feel like an invalid, not an athlete. I had seen ads in Bicycling magazine about a product called RoadID. I’d just never paid much attention until now.
RoadID is designed for athletes and comes in five different styles so you can just about wear it anywhere: wrist, ankle, neck (dog tag), shoe and a shoe pouch. I checked out the details online and then bought the Wrist ID sport model. Unlike the original, which just shows your name and emergency contacts, I chose the interactive ID. This allows me to include my name, both my diabetes 2 and asthma on the ID as well as provide a special phone number and website for first responders to quickly access my medical history including medications, personal doctor, emergency contacts and current medical problems. Each Road ID has an individual serial and pin number that is the access code to the medical information. I can also update my online medical info or emergency contacts anytime I want.
RoadID, a Kentucky-based company, is run by a father/son team: Edward and Mike Wimmer. They think carrying an ID should be as common, and as important, as putting on a seat belt when getting into a car, or strapping on a bike helmet to go for a ride.
Even if you don’t ride solo, your friends may not be able to help much in an accident. Would they know who to contact, your medical history or what medications you are taking? It seems to me that your safety is your own responsibility.
So, my attitude now is I’d rather wear ID and never need it than to need ID and not have it! It could save your life. www.RoadID.com