Mike Horsman thought he was done for when he came around a corner on his motorbike to find an SUV barreling toward him on the wrong side of the road.
Luckily his quick reactions meant the 4WD only clipped his foot although it wrote off his bike.
The 19-year-old Waiau Pa resident was on his way to work as an engineering trainee for Air New Zealand about 5.30am on Tuesday when he saw the headlights coming towards him as he was going around a blind corner on Linwood Rd just before the Hingaia Bridge in Karaka.
"I came around the corner and I saw him sitting there. I kind of zoned out in the moment and headed over as far as I could but obviously not far enough and it smacked my leg.
"It was just the shock of it that made me scream and swear all the way over the bridge," he said.
"It was just one of those moments where you are like, 'well, this is it'. You just go into shock. You tense up and prepare for the worst."
Horsman's quick thinking and steel cap boots meant he came out relatively unscathed and was able to stay on his bike until he could pull over after the bridge.
But the culprit did not stop or come back to check on him.
The driver behind him, who pulled over and called an ambulance, said the vehicle was still on the wrong side of the road when he saw him.
Horsman lay on the ground as he waited for an ambulance to arrive, too scared to take his boots or pants off for fear of what he might find.
Fortunately the only physical wounds were a few cuts and bruises where the buckles had been ripped off his boots and the steel caps had been squashed down on to his toes.
A trip to Middlemore Hospital revealed he had escaped without any broken bones but would have to be off work for three weeks since his ankle was badly sprained.
"I'm just lucky that it wasn't any worse than it was," he said. "My steel cap boots took the majority of the blow."
Despite his narrow escape, Horsman said he would be back on his bike as soon as he could buy a new one. "It was out of my control. It was unlucky."
His insurance company today confirmed his motorbike was a write-off but without any information on the other driver he will be forking out the $1000 excess.
Horsman said it was so dark and happened so quickly that all he and the driver behind him could tell was that it was a silver SUV similar to a Ford Explorer or Nissan Patrol.
Police confirmed they were called to the crash and were making inquiries to find the other driver.