Minn. Man Survives Motorcycle Crash; Advocates Helmet Use

June 12, 2017 03:11 PM

The motorcycle riding season in Minnesota is off to a deadly start—the Department of Public Safety reports that there have been 12 deaths so far in the state this season.

That’s the highest number this early in the season since the state started keeping records in 1994.


One Minnesota man’s family said he’s lucky to be alive after a recent crash.

While out for a Sunday cruise on his motorcycle roughly one month ago, 33-year-old Josh Keil was involved in a motorcycle crash along the 494-196 interchange. Fortunately, a registered nurse was driving behind Keil and was able to act quickly.

“Right away, I was like, 'OK let's check to see if he's breathing. Let's check his pulse to see if he's doing OK,'” the nurse said.

Keil was admitted to the Hennepin County Medical Center with a fractured skull and was in a coma for 16 days.

"When Josh woke up it was the happiest day of my life,” Keil’s younger sister Amanda said.

The crash left him with a few scrapes and no broken bones. But a local expert says the head is the key point of contact during those types of crashes.

"A lot of people though do survive these injuries but they survive them with a permanent traumatic brain injury,” the expert said.

Keil now uses hand motions to communicate and is relearning how to walk. His message to all motorcycle riders out there is simple: “Wear a helmet.”

"It's going to be a long road for Josh but it's not just a long road for him, it's a long road for everybody," Amanda said.

Eight of the 12 motorcycle riders who have died on Minnesota roads this year were not wearing a helmet. Minnesota law does not require riders 18 and older to wear one.


Brett Hoffland

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