Oscar winner Gene Hackman hit by pickup in Florida Keys

When most think about spending time in the Florida Keys, relaxing thoughts come to mind. Known as a bike friendly area, few likely consider the odds of being hit by a car while bicycling.

Veteran actor Gene Hackman was injured earlier this month when he was vacationing in the Florida Keys. The two-time Oscar winner was involved in an accident one afternoon when he was struck by a pickup while riding a bike.

The collision caused the 81-year-old man to land in the grass on the side of the road. While he reportedly sustained only bruises and bumps in the incident, he was nonetheless transported via helicopter to a hospital in Miami. There, he reportedly underwent several routine tests and was later released.

The end result of this accident could have been much worse. It is not uncommon for a cyclist to sustain serious injuries when he or she is hit by a motor vehicle. This is because other than a helmet, very little protection is available to people riding bicycles. The actor was not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.

Depending on the circumstances, accidents such as this can sometimes result in criminal charges. In addition, depending on the severity of the injuries sustained by the cyclist, civil personal injury cases are sometimes filed as well. The purpose of these lawsuits is to hold the person responsible for causing the injuries responsible. When successful, the injured party received financial compensation. At this point, no criminal charges have been filed in this case.

Source: USA Today, “Actor Gene Hackman OK after bicycle accident,” Jan, 14, 2011