Biker in critical condition after going airborne as I-20 buckled below him

by: Lori Wilson Updated:

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DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - A motorcycle and a car went airborne Monday when Interstate 20 buckled underneath them.

Witnesses say the motorcycle driver was thrown 10 to 15 feet in the air when the pavement began to crack and buckle upwards.

All lanes of I-20 westbound were shut down shortly after the crash as crews investigated what caused the road to buckle. Crews quickly began repairs to the roadway.

The Georgia Department of Transportation reopened two lanes Monday afternoon, but said all lanes will not be open until at least noon on Tuesday.

Traffic is being diverted from I-20 West to either I-285 North or I-285 South after the road buckled. HENRY TAYLOR / HENRY.TAYLOR@AJC.COM

Channel 2's Lori Wilson spoke to a friend of the motorcyclist when he stopped to check out the spot where his friend was injured.

Maurice "Kryptonite" Bolden wasn't able to tell Wilson much about his friend's condition, but said he was a regular rider, a good rider, known to those in his motorcycle club as "Smoothe."

“We're taught to be defensive and know the roads, but that's something that you can't prepare for,” Bolden said.

He said the man who was thrown into the air when I-20 buckled is a very good guy, with a wife and kids.

“He's a regular rider, seasoned, a real good rider,” Bolden told Wilson.

[READ: 2 lanes of I-20 westbound reopen following road buckle]

Bolden said no matter how strong a rider you are, Monday’s road buckle was something impossible to prepare for.

“Just out of the blue you run up on a piece of road that's three feet higher than everything else? There's no way to prepare for it.” Bolden told Wilson.

Bolden stopped near the buckle site on his way to the hospital to see his friend. He wanted to share the image on social media, so other riders would know what to look out for.

[READ: How to get around the I-20 road buckling]

“I stopped to get a picture of the road so I can put it out on our group chats and let everybody know just how bad the condition is,” Bolden told Wilson.

And even though he was told the biker was unresponsive, he is still hoping for the best outcome.

“I'm hoping for the best, hoping he's OK, maybe just a couple of bumps and bruises. But I don't know right now,” Bolden said.

The biker was taken to a DeKalb County hospital in critical condition. His was the only major injury during the incident.