April 10, 2019 1:06 pm

Guelph motorcyclist urges drivers to pay more attention after son, 11, injured in crash

Drew Haller and his 11-year-old son were injured in a motorcycle crash on Sunday afternoon in Guelph.

Drew Haller / Facebook

Just days after a motorcycle crash injured a Guelph man and his 11-year-old son, the father is urging all drivers to pay more attention to the road now that the warm weather is here.

Drew Haller and his son were out for a ride on Sunday for the first time this year on a bike they had built together.

READ MORE: Man and child ejected in motorcycle crash with minivan: Guelph police

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While driving down Grange Road, Haller struck a minivan that reportedly pulled out in front of them.

Both Haller and his son were sent flying to the pavement.

The young boy had to be airlifted to a trauma centre, and Haller suffered a severe gash on his leg.

In an interview on Tuesday, Haller said they’re lucky to be alive.

“To see your child in a full-body cast, it’s really hard,” he said while fighting back tears. “The helmets definitely saved our lives. If you look at them, the scratches and dents that are in them are just phenomenal.”

Haller said there was a bystander who helped stop his leg from bleeding, which he believes also saved his life.

Both Haller and his son, who has a severe concussion, are now recovering at home.

“It shouldn’t have happened at all if the gentleman opened his eyes and obeyed the laws of the road,” Haller said.

Guelph police charged the minivan driver with careless driving causing bodily harm. Haller explained that the driver tried to make a turn through the motorcycle’s path and the crash couldn’t have been avoided.

He alleges the driver may have been on his phone at the time of the crash.

“I have to deal with 22 stitches in my leg, my son has to take [time] off from school, I can’t work right now — all because one gentleman didn’t want to bother getting off his phone and pay attention to his driving,” he said.

WATCH (Jan. 2, 2019): Tough new penalties now in effect in Ontario for distracted, impaired driving

For Haller, it’s now his second crash on a motorcycle following one near downtown Guelph two years ago.

He said he may never get on a bike again, and his son may never get on one again, either.

READ MORE: Caledon man identified in fatal motorcycle crash near Guelph

Now that the warm weather has returned, Haller is calling on all drivers to pay more attention out on the roads but not just for motorcycles.

“There’s going to be kids running around and playing on the sidewalks, there’s going to be balls flying across the streets, there’s going to bicyclists, skateboarders (and) motorcyclists,” he said.

“Please pay attention to your surroundings.”

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