A biker's GoPro camera captured a dramatic head-on crash into a fire department vehicle in the mountains northeast of Los Angeles.
Jesse Lopez suffered broken bones after he collided April 1 with the Los Angeles County Fire Department crew transport bus on Glendora Ridge Road, a popular route through Angeles National Forest. The video posted to YouTube earlier this month showed Lopez's view as he followed a friend around a blind corner and drifted across the unmarked road into the path of the oncoming truck.
"I don't remember what happened due to memory loss, but I might have panicked when I saw the truck," Lopez told NBC News. "So I applied the front brake, which straightened me out and I went straight toward the truck, which was also moving probably about 35 mph."
The camera showed the violent head-on impact and continued to record as Lopez was thrown from the motorcycle. Voices of emergency medical personnel and Lopez's friend can be heard in the background as he remained motionless on the ground.
County fire department personnel, who had been clearing brush in the area, immediately stopped to provide aid after the crash before the victim was airlifted to a hospital, said LA County Fire Inspector Chris Reade. A friend grabbed the GoPro camera, which showed debris scattered across the road, Lopez's motorcycle on its side and the damaged fire vehicle.
Lopez survived, suffering a broken femur, tibia, fibula, ulna and humerus at the elbow. The truck's driver was not injured.
Unlike a car, applying the brakes while turning a motorcycle can cause the operator to lose control, according to the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. Instead, the MSF advises motorcyclists to slow down before entering a curve, and to straighten the bike upright before applying the brakes.