Billionaire Richard Branson survives bike crash

Undated handout image issued by Virgin.com on Friday Aug. 26, 2016 of Sir Richard Branson after he was involved in an accident when he crashed his bicycle on Virgin Gorda, one of the British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean. The Virgin founder badly damaged his cheek and suffered severe cuts to his knee, chin, shoulder and body. Sir Richard said: "I was heading down a hill towards Leverick Bay when it suddenly got really dark and I managed to hit a traffic hump in the road head on.(Virgin.com via AP)

LONDON (AP) — Billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson said Friday he thought he was going to die after flying head first off his bicycle in the British Virgin Islands.

The Virgin Group boss hit a hump in the road on Virgin Gorda, one of the islands in the Caribbean, catapulting him into the road. The 66-year-old posted pictures of his bloodied face on social media on Friday, showing the gruesome injuries that included a cracked cheek, torn ligaments and severe cuts.

“My life was literally flashing before my eyes,” he wrote. “I really thought I was going to die. I went flying head-first towards the concrete road, but fortunately my shoulder and cheek took the brunt of the impact, and I was wearing a helmet that saved my life.”

Branson traveled to Miami to receive medical treatment. He said he was really lucky to have not suffered more serious injuries.

“My biggest hardship is having to drink tea out of a straw,” he said.

Branson was training for September’s Virgin Strive Challenge, an event in which participants hike, cycle, swim and run from the base of the Matterhorn in the Alps to the summit of Mount Etna in Sicily.

Branson still hopes to take part in the charity event.

“My attitude has always been, if you fall flat on your face, at least you’re moving forward,” he said.

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