Advice following incident with a bus

darylwilkerson
Posts: 16
Joined: 11 Sep 2009, 3:38pm

Advice following incident with a bus

Postby darylwilkerson » 26 Jul 2012, 4:17pm

Yesterday I was involved in an incident with a bus in Exeter. Instead of giving all of the details here, you can view what happened on this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l0sjiyc5RNk

I reported this incident to Devon County Council, and the have passed it onto the bus company that they tender this route to. I have since been contacted by the managing director of this company, who initially asked me to call him to discuss this matter. I replied stating that I would rather that we liaised over email, such that a record could be kept. He was quite abrupt with his replies, demanding my details for their insurers. I am confused as to why he is asking for this, but suspect that they may try and claim that I damaged the bus during the incident (I slapped the bus with an open palm as it passed me, very closely). As luck would have it (or not?) I had another incident during my commute home with the exact same bus, and you can clearly see the bus is undamaged, not that one could do any damage to a big bus with an open palm whilst riding a bike at 20mph anyway!!

Some advice as to the next steps that I can take would be much appreciated.

thirdcrank
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Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 2:44pm

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby thirdcrank » 26 Jul 2012, 4:19pm

If you need legal advice you need a lawyer IMO.

daveg
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Location: Chapel Allerton. Leeds

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby daveg » 26 Jul 2012, 8:35pm

darylwilkerson wrote:Some advice as to the next steps that I can take would be much appreciated.


I think it depends what are you are wanting to acheive. If your purpose was just to let those in charge of the contract know the poor way that the contract was being discharged then job done. My guess would be that the MD of the company was attempting to intimidate you with the insurance request, but letting him know that this is through CTC should put him off taking it further.

My only suggestion would be that I'd feel that contacting the County Council again to let them know that intimidating approach by the MD and to ask what they intended to do, if anything. Get them to fire the bullets - the bus firm has no alternative but to listen to them. I also think that the County Council has not helped by passing on your contact details and not asking the company to respond to them but that's another issue.
If it wasn't for cars, there wouldn't be the amount of tarmac that there is.

theenglishman
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Joined: 10 Jun 2012, 5:01pm

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby theenglishman » 26 Jul 2012, 8:54pm

Go see the police. That's what I'd have done long before putting the video on youtube.

Mark1978
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Location: Chester-le-Street, County Durham

Advice following incident with a bus

Postby Mark1978 » 26 Jul 2012, 9:11pm

Problem is nothing actually happened. He passed too close, but you weren't knocked off so they will probably just ignore it.

Tonyf33
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Location: Letchworth N.Herts

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby Tonyf33 » 27 Jul 2012, 3:15am

in my experience you're running into a dead end. If no-one was injured then you'll get an apology letter and a promise of re-training at best.
The council won't want to get involved, neither will the regional transport commisioner whose legal responsibility it is regarding public licensed vehicle companies.
So unless you're after compensation for something or other then stop wasting your time...

hexhome
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Location: Hexham, Northumberland

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby hexhome » 27 Jul 2012, 9:42am

I assume that the OP was shaken and upset by the incident and just wants the driver's employers to be aware of the issues. A fairly written email will achieve this. In my experience, it rarely is a waste of time. A conversation will take place with the driver and his line manager. This will result in increased awareness of the issues. It won't achieve a prosecution or a disciplining of the driver unless there are other witnesses.

As a matter of interest, I have just written an email to a local bus company praising the actions of one of their drivers. I believe that this will have a similar effect.

darylwilkerson
Posts: 16
Joined: 11 Sep 2009, 3:38pm

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby darylwilkerson » 27 Jul 2012, 9:45am

Thanks for the advice guys. To clarify, I'm not looking for any more than the company to speak to their drivers about their responsibility to keep other road users and members of the public from harm with their actions. If I just left this, with no complaint, the next cyclist might not be as luck.
I was somewhat taken aback by the intimidating manner in which the MD approached this situation, and was slightly unnerved by the request for my insurance details. The company have been back in touch, and they are not claiming that I damaged the bus, just that their insurers will need to no that I 'appeared to strike the bus'. The CTC legal team have said that as there is no claim for damage or injury to either side, there is no obligation to exchange details, and this was verified by the police. I have been back in touch with the company (copying in the Council) stating that I am disappointed with their approach to this matter, and recounted the advice from the CTC. We will see what happens next.

darylwilkerson
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Joined: 11 Sep 2009, 3:38pm

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby darylwilkerson » 27 Jul 2012, 10:27am

Surprise surprise, they are now claiming that the vehicle has been damaged.... I don't have time for this nonsense.

irc
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Location: glasgow

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby irc » 27 Jul 2012, 11:01am

I can't understand slapping passing vehicles. By the time they are close enough to slap I would rather give 100% attention to avoiding a collision by steering and if necessary braking. Taking a hand off the bars at the point a motor vehicle is beside me seems counter productive.

are you covered for 3rd party damage through the CTC or other insurance?

darylwilkerson
Posts: 16
Joined: 11 Sep 2009, 3:38pm

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby darylwilkerson » 27 Jul 2012, 11:46am

I agree with the above comment, and I have never slapped a vehicle before, it was a reflex reaction as the coach was pulling across my path. I have been in touch with the CTC and they should be able to offer legal support.

kwackers
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Location: Warrington

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby kwackers » 27 Jul 2012, 11:48am

darylwilkerson wrote:I agree with the above comment, and I have never slapped a vehicle before, it was a reflex reaction as the coach was pulling across my path. I have been in touch with the CTC and they should be able to offer legal support.

I also slapped a vehicle once as an instinctive reaction although I was already in the process of falling off the bike so it was too late for me...

thirdcrank
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Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby thirdcrank » 27 Jul 2012, 11:54am

This is a general comment:-

I'm a supporter of headcams and the like but they can be used in different ways. All I'm really interested in doing is having a record of events to support my own account if things go wrong.

If anybody wants to go beyond that and into the realms of enforcement, either formally by reporting stuff to an increasingly uninterested police force, or informally by shaming drivers on youtube etc, then they need to behave impeccably and have a reasonable knowledge of the law. IMO.

One of the high-profile exponents of that formal approach is Martin Porter QC. Even he has experienced difficulties getting results.

One of the problems with the internet is that some people make bullets for others to fire. The problem is then that if something goes wrong, all those people advocating banging cars and the like are sitting comfily at their keyboards. I'm not suggesting that things like shouting (even screaming) a warning, or banging the side of a vehicle are in themselves wrong; they may well be the instinctive reaction by somebody in danger. On the other hand, to the extent that they are a form of campaigning or even vigilantism, they may be self-defeating.

(Others have posted since I started to compose this.)

Unfortunately, it's also apparent that the authorities are comprehensively failing to protect cyclists.

darylwilkerson
Posts: 16
Joined: 11 Sep 2009, 3:38pm

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby darylwilkerson » 27 Jul 2012, 12:12pm

thirdcrank wrote:
If anybody wants to go beyond that and into the realms of enforcement, either formally by reporting stuff to an increasingly uninterested police force, or informally by shaming drivers on youtube etc, then they need to behave impeccably and have a reasonable knowledge of the law. IMO.


I have never before touched a vehicle (as can be seen on all of my previous youtube videos) and I would never advocate damaging a vehicle or an act of violence of any kind due to a traffic incident. As for behaving impeccably, that's a difficult one. I make mistakes on the road, and often I will post these to youtube so that others might see them and not make the same error. I have also shouted profanities as a vehicle has endangered me, which is not exactly impeccable behaviour, but I would argue excusable in the heat of the moment.

I'm just shocked that a company would go on the attack (given the available evidence) rather than admit any responsibility. That is disgraceful behaviour IMO.

broadway
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Location: Cheshire

Re: Advice following incident with a bus

Postby broadway » 27 Jul 2012, 12:16pm

darylwilkerson wrote:Thanks for the advice guys. To clarify, I'm not looking for any more than the company to speak to their drivers about their responsibility to keep other road users and members of the public from harm with their actions. If I just left this, with no complaint, the next cyclist might not be as luck.
I was somewhat taken aback by the intimidating manner in which the MD approached this situation, and was slightly unnerved by the request for my insurance details. The company have been back in touch, and they are not claiming that I damaged the bus, just that their insurers will need to no that I 'appeared to strike the bus'. The CTC legal team have said that as there is no claim for damage or injury to either side, there is no obligation to exchange details, and this was verified by the police. I have been back in touch with the company (copying in the Council) stating that I am disappointed with their approach to this matter, and recounted the advice from the CTC. We will see what happens next.


It might have been easier to call him first, maybe they are being "difficult" because they are unsure of what you you are after, especially since you want a fairly pointless paper trail.