LAKESIDE, Calif. (CNS) - A freak accident in an eastern San Diego County parking lot left a bicyclist's face impaled on a roof rack on a pickup truck Tuesday, authorities reported.
The 53-year-old man was riding to the north outside a convenience store in the 10100 block of Maine Avenue in Lakeside when he collided with the westbound work vehicle shortly before 8:30 a.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.
A hook on the front of a cargo rack extending over the cab of the truck pierced the underside of the bicyclist's jaw and cut its way out of his right cheek above the initial entry point, leaving the man hung up on the metal peg, CHP public affairs Officer Travis Garrow said.
Emergency personnel held off on trying to remove the victim from the hook for about 20 minutes while conferring with hospital staffers, who ultimately advised them to go ahead and do so without further delay. Firefighters then "very carefully" lifted the man up, freeing him, Garrow said.
Paramedics took the victim -- who had been conscious, alert and on his feet throughout the excruciating ordeal -- to Sharp Memorial Hospital in San Diego for treatment of his severe injuries, the CHP spokesman said.