Sir Richard Branson says he thought he was “going to die” after crashing his bike on Virgin Gorda in the Caribbean.
Looking a little worse for wear Sir Richard says he was cycling down a hill when he hit a speed bump and “the next thing I knew, I was being hurled over the handlebars and my life was literally flashing before my eyes”.
Fortunately the Virgin founder only sustained a cracked cheek and torn ligaments. However, his bike went flying off the cliff and disappeared.
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“I really thought I was going to die,” the 66-year-old said on the Virgin website. “I went flying head-first towards the concrete road, but fortunately my shoulder and cheek took the brunt of the impact, and I was wearing a helmet that saved my life.”
Sir Richard says a rescue mission was undertaken to retrieve his crumpled bicycle, but it is “completely destroyed”.
“My cheek has been badly damaged and my knee, chin, shoulder and body severely cut,” he says.
Coincidentally the accident happened on the fifth anniversary of a fire that destroyed his luxury home on Necker Island.
Sir Richard was cycling with his children Holly and Sam as part of his training for the Virgin Strive Challenge, an endurance event that goes from the base of Matterhorn in the Alps to the summit of Mount Etna in Sicily, Italy.
In good humour, Sir Richard still hopes to take part in the event saying, “My attitude has always been, if you fall flat on your face, at least you’re moving forward.”
Have you ever been involved in a serious accident? Has there ever been a moment where your life ‘flashed before your eyes’? Tell us about it.