Oh, bottoms. I deliberately didn't answer this poll as I'd never had an accident and didn't want to tempt fate, but last night I was hit by a van. I'm fine and the bike's fine, but still, I was hit by a van.
Heading home last night, about a quarter to six, travelling south on Duddingston Road West. I had flashing and solid white lights at the front, ditto red lights at the back, large reflective brightly coloured panniers on each side, hi-viz vest, reflective trouser bands and wrist bands. I looked like a scaffie crossed with a Christmas tree on wheels on acid. I was visible
As I approached the junction with Peffer Place on my left I could see a van coming along Peffer Place. It stopped at the line and I could see the driver looking back along Duddingston Road West the way I'd come. It's a wide junction and his view wasn't restricted. I wasn't out wide in the road, but neither was I gutter-hugging. I was far enough out to make sure I could be seen and to avoid drains but close enough in that traffic could pass me easily when clear to do so. I don't know how fast I was going, but probably 12-15mph. I didn't see him see me but there was no reason to suspect he hadn't see me, until he pulled out right across my path. He continued to move out, no idea I was there, and I remember thinking that perhaps he was deliberately trying to force me off the road. If I'd braked he would have gone over me with his back end - my only option was to swerve to my right to avoid him. Luckily there was nothing coming the other way and I had space to move. The van made contact with my arm - at the time it felt like it just brushed me, but my arm is sore now so I wonder if it was harder than that.
I got myself to safety in a driveway on the other side of the road. He stopped, and the following traffic stopped behind him. He was very apologetic, said he just hadn't seen me, and didn't berate me for my language, which was intemperate. He said he had the kids in the van and wouldn't have risked their lives by pulling out in front of something - he just didn't see me.
I don't know how he didn't see me, but there you go.
I got his name and the van reg and the name of the company (liveried van) and the name and phone number of the woman in the following car who saw it all and was quite clear he was at fault. I reassured them all I was fine, apologised for my language and sent them on their way.
I was way too shaky to cycle home so I walked and went straight to the police station which is right outside my flat. The desk sergeant was - well, he wasn't exactly unhelpful but I wasn't overwhelmed by his interest. The first thing he did was ask me if the Duddingston Road West police station was closed. All I could say was, I have no idea, I've just been hit by a van, I'm shaky and just wanted to get home and completely forgot there was a station nearby. I gave him all the info but he was saying that careless driving is difficult to prove in court if there's no damage to the person or the vehicle so he didn't think there was much they could do. He's going to do an incident report, speak to the witness and the driver and then phone me back - he said he'd phone me last night or today, so it'll be today now. I bet he doesn't though. Oh, and he took the opportunity to tell me that so many cyclists cycle without lights, jump red lights etc, and so many white van men hit people and don't stop.
All the way home I wondered if I was being vindictive in reporting it, seeing as I'm fine and he apologised - but I'm fine because I had space to take evasive action. If there'd been traffic coming the other way I'd have had nowhere to go and things could have been nasty. I'm annoyed with the police attitude, but I'll wait til they phone me back before I decide if I want to pursue it.
My arm isn't swollen and there's no visible bruising so I'm not going to bother the doctor with it, I'll just treat it myself with wine.
Got downstairs this morning to discover my back tyre flat and floppy so decided to walk it over to Bicycle Repair Man and get him to sort it and give the whole thing a look over. 20 minutes later I had an inflated back tyre and a re-trued front wheel. The flat back tyre was probably due to the massive staple he picked out of it rather than the collision though.