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Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in a Severe motorcycle acciden

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Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is in serious but stable condition and underwent surgery following a serious head injury he suffered this morning when his motorcycle collided with a car on Second Avenue near the 10th Street Bridge, police said.

 

Roethlisberger lost most of his teeth, fractured his left sinus cavity bone, suffered a nine-inch laceration to the back of his head and a broken jaw, and injured both of his knees when he hit the ground, police said.

 

"He is right now in the (operating room) undergoing some surgery from injuries he received in this accident today," said Dr. Larry Jones, chief of trauma and burns at Mercy Hospital, Uptown. "He was talking to me before he left for the OR. He's coherent. He's making sense. He knows what happened."

 

Roethlisberger, 24, who was not wearing a helmet, collided with a Chrysler New Yorker at 11:15 a.m. and was thrown off his motorcycle, flying head-first into the car's windshield "with a pretty good force," said a veteran city police officer.

 

 

Roethlisberger was talking and moving his arms and legs after the accident.

 

The car, which has Maine license plates, was heading west on Second Avenue and was turning left onto the 10th Street Bridge. Roethlisberger was driving east on Second Avenue riding a Suzuki Hayabusa and collided with the car at the intersection of the bridge and the Armstrong Tunnels.

 

The driver of the New Yorker, Martha Fleishman, 62, who maintains residences in Maine and Squirrel Hill, escaped serious injury, police said.

 

"She really feels terrible about what happened, and we certainly wish him a speedy recovery," said her husband, Martin Fleishman, who declined further comment.

 

Roethlisberger, who led the Steelers to a Super Bowl championship this year, slammed into the windshield, rolled over the car and landed on the pavement, striking his head again, said a woman who witnessed the accident.

 

The witness, who declined to give her name, asked Roethlisberger several times if he was OK.

 

He eventually replied, "My name is Ben."

 

He asked: "Where am I?"

 

"You're at the Armstrong Tunnel," the witness said.

 

"What city is that in?" he said.

 

"Pittsburgh," the woman replied.

 

Roethlisberger fell silent for about a minute and then tried to stand up.

 

"I'm OK," he said.

 

"No you're not," said the woman, who instructed him to stay still.

 

Pittsburgh homicide detectives are investigating the accident, which is standard procedure when critical injuries are involved, said city police Lt. Kevin Kraus.

 

Roethlisberger's 2005 Suzuki Hayabusa, which is named after a Japanese bird of prey, was totaled. The 170-horsepower bike, which weighs 500 pounds fully loaded, was targeted by law enforcement agencies worldwide after its 1998 debut because it could reach a top speed of 189 mph.

 

Suzuki Motorcycles of North America gave Roethlisberger the bike as part of a promotional deal in exchange for his appearance at several area Suzuki dealerships, including Andrews Cycle in Salem, Ohio, where he picked up the motorcycle last summer. Andrews' sales staff declined comment.

 

The motorcycle is popular among first-time buyers, said Steve Stiller, a salesman at Northgate Motorcycles in Cranberry, Butler County.

 

Roethlisberger said previously he prefers not to wear a helmet when riding motorcycles. Pennsylvania's 35-year-old law requiring helmets to be worn was amended in 2003 to make helmets optional, he noted.

 

In May 2005, Steelers coach Bill Cowher lectured Roethlisberger about the dangers of riding without a helmet.

 

"He talked about being a risk-taker, and I'm not really a risk-taker. I'm pretty conservative and laid back, but the big thing is to just be careful," Roethlisberger said at the time. "I'll just continue to be careful. I told him we don't ever ride alone, we always ride in a group of people, and I think it makes it even more safe."

 

In May 2005, Cleveland Browns tight end Kellen Winslow Jr. tore knee ligaments in a motorcycle accident and was lost for the season.

 

Roethlisberger continued to ride after Winslow's accident, and that angered Terry Bradshaw, who quarterbacked the Steelers to four Super Bowl victories during the 1970s.

 

Visiting the Steelers' training camp last summer, Bradshaw remarked: "Ride it when you retire."

 

Earlier this year, Roethlisberger led the Steelers to the NFL title, giving the team the fifth Super Bowl win they had been chasing since 1980.

 

This Has really been a shock to me, I have been glued to the TV all day

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Motorcylces are dangerous - motorcycles wtihout helmets are particularly dangerous. I can't understand why someone would risk sidelining such a lucrative career with an injury because he doesn't want to wear a helmet. Although it would not have helped the knees the head would have fared better.

 

In fact I'm surprised, as much as these guys make, that they don't have clauses to avoid dangerous activities in their contracts.

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It is very unfortunate that Ben R. had an accident. He is a highly talented quarterback. I have to agree that it seems overly foolhardy for someone making a multimillion dollar salary to risk it all by first of all riding a motorcycle and secondly by riding without a helmet. Motorcycles are dangerous. I agree with Bradshaw - Drive the motorcycle AFTER you retire. I hope he comes out of this well, but it doesn't sound so good at the moment. I hope he may have as speedy and complete a recovery as possible.

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Thats a real shame about Ben. Funny though, that Ben wears a helmet when people are coming at him but not when cars are coming at him.... :assimilated:

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Thats a real shame about Ben. Funny though, that Ben wears a helmet when people are coming at him but not when cars are coming at him.... :assimilated:

I really want to make a joke... I really do... but it wouldn't be a nice...

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well according to the new updates i have found, he is doing really good, the knee injury is really minor and he will be relased from the hospital in the next few days, all the vital oraon are fine and no sign of a concussion, and the one Doctor who operated on him said he should be ready to attend training camp which is amazing, he is very lucky, not just about these injuries but he could of easily been killed

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In fact I'm surprised, as much as these guys make, that they don't have clauses to avoid dangerous activities in their contracts.

 

 

To be honest (and I am trying to find that article I just recently read on the first day news broke out about Ben being hit), they in fact DO have clauses that restrict dangerous activities.

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I heard the tail end of a newscast on radio this morning that Big Ben didn't even have a motorcycle license. I haven't been able to confirm this. Has anyone else heard this?

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