We had to follow the coast road – no chance to divert to the toll road today. Being lazy in the morning, we didn’t start off until midday, but it was a fairly short drive to Krk.
The road hugged the coastline, looking across to the moonscape of Pag, a very long and narrow island.
We had been driving for 45 minutes along this remote coastline with little traffic, and were two thirds of the way to the end of Pag, when we were brought to an abrupt halt by a queue of cars. People were out of there vehicles, and we instinctively knew this was not roadworks. Clare made a few enquiries while I stayed in the van with the boys. About 50 to 100, possibly more, cars ahead a motorcyclist had come off his bike and lay dead in the road.
Apart from our little incident in Swidnica last August where a white van man rolled his vehicle backwards into us at traffic lights, in the 40,000 Km or so we had travelled in Europe, we had not really seen any road traffic incident of note. We were quite shocked. Walking on a bit I could see, some 200m away, the whole cordoned off section of road, the white sheet covering the body, and the wreckage of the motorbike. While watching, a white VW T6 van with blacked out rear windows arrived and a recovery vehicle. I didn’t stay to see the body recovery, it didn’t seem right, so I returned to our van.
We were stationary for perhaps 45 minutes to an hour before the road was reopened, and the queue of cars passed the accident spot in a grim and slow procession. We were 5 minutes outside the town of Karlobag, now full of bikers standing by the side of the road in silent groups in their mournful black leathers, Polish, Slovenian and Croatian in unity on this Labour Day tragedy. And there was the bike, now upright, strapped to a yellow recovery truck, a white riderless BMW motorbike.
We arrived at our campsite at about 4pm, a holiday park, packed with Slovenians enjoying their two day Labour Day holiday.