Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The value of PPE (Personal Protection Equipment)

There was an article in the American Field Magazine a year or so ago that portrayed a bad horse fall where the rider was hospitalized in ICU for weeks with a brain injury.  In that article, they discussed at length the use of good tack, a saddle one can hang on to, training the horse, what shoes to wear.  The glaring omission in that article was they NEVER mentioned wearing a riding helmet.  As most will attest, it's a rare occurence to catch either Janet or I riding a trial without a "brain bucket".  I recall one trial where I judged and my co-judge fell backwards off his horse, hitting his head on a rock not a half an hour after teasing me about wearing said "bucket".  After he staggered around holding his head in pain for minutes, he got back on and I asked him if he'd like a helmet, as I have extras in our trailer - he declined...  I always answer that it's my brain that pays the bills, not my looks!

This one's stylish too!

A few weeks ago we posted about how much fun we have roading our dogs off the bicycles. Though we are quite concientious about wearing our PPE while riding horseback, we've been a bit more lax about doing so with the dogs.  I tend to wear hiking boots, gloves and a face shield (for spraying rocks). 

Yesterday Janet decided to run Hank and Scarlet (who I usually road) on the bike.  She wore the boots and eye protection, but neglected to wear gloves... 

Now I ride a mountain bike with knobby tires, a suspension, dual brakes and weigh somewhere around 100 lbs. more than Janet.  She rides a "cruiser" with big fat road tires and a rear coaster brake.  When she gave the dogs the release, they shot like from a cannon with the reduced load.  It took about 40 yards and they were at full speed - at about 50 yards the bike started sliding and at about 52 yards Janet augered into the gravel road at probably over 30 mph.  The result - two dogs dragging a (surprisingly durable) bike a mile into a field, a trip to the Tijuana Free Clinic - oops  Emergency Room and a few weeks of recuperation.

1 comment:

  1. "Poor girl!" Joanie calls out after I read your post and show her the picture.

    Janet, when is your birthday? I'll buy you a "Springer" for your cruiser.

    30mph. It's been along time since I ate gravel at those speeds. I'm glad it wasn't worse. Heal quickly girl.

    Rod & Joanie