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Two seriously injured in local motorcycle accidents this weekend

Two single-vehicle motorcycle accidents this weekend left two men seriously injured. One of the men remained in critical condition as of Saturday. While there is no indication of what caused the two wrecks, it's a good reminder that spring is here and motorcyclists are out on the roads. Whether you are a biker yourself or sharing the road with motorcyclists, take a moment to remind yourself to drive with extra care.

The first motorcycle wreck took place at around 6:45 p.m. on Friday evening in the Bluewater Bay area of Okaloosa County. According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a 40-year-old man from Niceville was riding his motorcycle on westbound Bay Drive. As he headed into the left-hand curve near Lido Circle, something made him lose control of his bike.

The man was thrown from his motorcycle and landed face-down on the south shoulder of Bay Drive. Unfortunately, he was not wearing a helmet. He was taken to Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola, where he remained in critical condition as of Saturday, with possible head injuries. The FHP does not yet know the cause of the crash, and an investigation is ongoing.

The second motorcycle accident occurred on Sunday morning in the Blackwater River State Forest near Baker. A 39-year-old Baker man was riding a KTM motorcycle northbound on State Forest Road. At about 10:20 a.m., the biker hit a high spot in the road. The bump was apparently serious enough that he lost control.

The motorcycle flew approximately 25 feet into the air, then hit the ground and skidded another 25 feet into a pine tree. The man was wearing a helmet, which was extremely lucky. He was airlifted to Sacred Heart and was listed only in serious condition despite the severity of the accident.

It is not yet clear whether the high spot on State Forest Road was the result of poor highway maintenance or if it was known to be a hazard before the motorcycle accident.

As always, please take care when riding your motorcycle, or when sharing the road with a motorcyclist.

Source: Northwest Florida Daily News, "Motorcyclist in serious condition after hitting tree; another motorcyclist remains in critical condition," Lauren Sage Reinlie, April 4, 2011

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