BIKE MESSENGER WEDGED INTO 8-INCH GAP - & LIVES
A bike messenger whizzing through Midtown traffic miraculously escaped death yesterday when he was squished between a truck and a city bus. Doucoure Adama, 21, was wedged into an 8-inch space between the truck and the M1 bus after the truck suddenly stopped on Madison Avenue near 40th Street at about 10:45 a.m. The immigrant from Mali, whose black Raleigh was turned into a pretzel, was rushed to Bellevue Hospital, where he was in stable condition. A CAT-scan revealed no broken bones. "The truck sped up a little bit and then stopped suddenly. When it stopped, it kind of put me in a sandwich," said the messenger, a devout Muslim who prays five times a day. "I didn't see it coming. It just suddenly happened. The truck [driver] wasn't looking in the rearview mirror and I just got stuck." John Gomez, 22, a messenger who got Adama into the business, said his friend's survival is "kind of a miracle. It's a payoff for all the prayers he said." Pinned between the two vehicles, Adama screamed in agony. The bus driver tried to back away, but it only seemed to make matters worse and he screamed even louder, said witness Sidney Morris. Emergency personnel freed Adama after about 20 minutes by deflating the tires of the bus and truck and using inflatable expanders to push the vehicles away from each other. The driver of the truck — registered to RM Inc. of Norwalk, Conn., and bearing the message, "Be a Blood Donor. Thanks" in large letters — was too shaken up to comment. Adama, who lives in The Bronx with a cousin, works for the Cayor Courier Service. Manager Glenn Mann, 42, said Adama is trying to save enough money to build a house in Africa. "I feel really bad. He's a young kid still. He's always smiling and happy." Mann said. After Adama was freed, several bike messengers gathered around the mangled remains of his bike. "It's the street. It's really narrow for an avenue, and then you've got to dodge all these potholes and all these big trucks and buses, too. It's crazy," said messenger Curtis Carr.