Road incident

Commuting, Day rides, Audax, Incidents, etc.
Cinq05
Posts: 3
Joined: 20 Mar 2012, 7:47pm

Road incident

Postby Cinq05 » 20 Mar 2012, 8:03pm

Hi,

I'm an uninsured cyclist. I was coming to a red light when I heard an ambulance coming up from behind. In seeing this, I overtook the car in front of me going up the right hand side of him and went forward so as to be able to get a safe distance ahead and thus allow me to pull in to the left and allow the ambulance to go through. I had moved before the car in front of me who saw the ambulance later than I did. Upon seeing the ambulance, the driver proceeded to drive ahead and towards the left (there was a bus in the inside lane blocking him from going more left). In doing so, he clipped my back wheel and he claims that I went into him and caused artificial damage to his front right bumper.

There is a small scratch at the tip near his front right wheel.

I was unclear at the time that any damage had been caused and upon checking my wheel and seeing that it was fine - I cycled off. He later caught up with me and accused me of going into him. I denied this and advised he had gone into me and very nearly took me out. He pulled up at the side of the road and saw that there was a small scratch. He then told me to pull over so I got onto the path at the safest place as the entire road is bus lane only so it was unsuitable to stop.

He thought I was intending to cycle off and was so convinced that he tried to pull me off my bike (not appreciating the stubborn nature of pedal cleats). At this point I did feel threatened and he also told me that if I did cycle off he would knock me out. Upon informing him that I had no intention of cycling off and that if he was convinced of my error, he call the police. He did so but before the police arrived he drove off. I have just attended the local police station as I did not want to be seen to be fleeing the scene so to speak.

I have been told by the police that it is not a matter for them and that details have been exchanged and that is that.

I have his number and he has mine.

There is no damage to my bike nor is there any damage to me.

Where do I stand and what would one advise in this situation?

northstar
Posts: 51
Joined: 21 May 2009, 6:55pm

Re: Road incident

Postby northstar » 20 Mar 2012, 10:28pm

Sounds like poor observation on his part - appears not to have looked in his mirrors?

Did you tell the police he tried to pull you off your bike?, as technically that is a form of assault, though very hard to prove without witnesses.

It will just end up being a case of his word against yours, though you talking to the police and him driving off before they came to me, swings it in your favour.

As it sounds like he was behind you too, i think it is often but not always assumed they are responsible as they shouldn't have been that close to the vehicle in front.

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gaz
Posts: 13736
Joined: 9 Mar 2007, 12:09pm
Location: Kent, car park of England

Re: Road incident

Postby gaz » 20 Mar 2012, 10:33pm

Welcome to the forum, sorry to hear your news.

Take a look here for general advice.

This thread involves a driver initially denying liability and may give some pointers on what might happen next.

This thread might explain the police response in terms of the RTA rather than the threats of violence.

Get professional advice, no win - no fee. Check your household insurance if you have it for public liability cover in case he does claim against you.
Hand wash only. Do not iron.

Cinq05
Posts: 3
Joined: 20 Mar 2012, 7:47pm

Re: Road incident

Postby Cinq05 » 20 Mar 2012, 10:38pm

northstar wrote:Sounds like poor observation on his part - appears not to have looked in his mirrors?

Did you tell the police he tried to pull you off your bike?, as technically that is a form of assault, though very hard to prove without witnesses.

It will just end up being a case of his word against yours, though you talking to the police and him driving off before they came to me, swings it in your favour.

As it sounds like he was behind you too, i think it is often but not always assumed they are responsible as they shouldn't have been that close to the vehicle in front.


I was coming up his right hand side so I assume he looked in his rear wing mirror for the ambulance and upon seeing it drove forward, not knowing that I was in his path having overtaken his stationary vehicle in the interim period of him spotting the ambulance and moving. Had he been looking ahead before he stepped on the gas he would have seen me and therefore not have hit me.

I told the officer at the station once he had driven off that he tried to pull me off my bike. She at once rang him and established his side of things. She seemed not bothered as I was not hurt and that I had no intention of pressing charges of assault but should this ever go to court I will certainly use this in my case against him. She told me he merely asked her whether I 'had accepted liability' on the phone call. There were many witnesses who walked past but none stopped to intervene - I can imagine the sight of a tall man in lycra having his bike pulled from underneath him by a smaller man dresses in smart work attire would seem rather strange.

She suggested I seek legal advice if he contacts with a hefty bill but that if it is say £50 or so, I pay it or face it going through a small claims court.

Here is a link to an awful MS paint version of events.

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/593/incidentw.png/

Cinq05
Posts: 3
Joined: 20 Mar 2012, 7:47pm

Re: Road incident

Postby Cinq05 » 20 Mar 2012, 10:47pm

gaz wrote:Welcome to the forum, sorry to hear your news.

Take a look here for general advice.

This thread involves a driver initially denying liability and may give some pointers on what might happen next.

This thread might explain the police response in terms of the RTA rather than the threats of violence.

Get professional advice, no win - no fee. Check your household insurance if you have it for public liability cover in case he does claim against you.


Thanks, Gaz.

All great links that are certainly of help. I admit I did not handle the situation brilliantly. I did not take his reg, his insurance details or even his name. Him driving off leaving me at the scene when he had called the police bewildered me. I've spoken to my sister this eve who is a copper who said that I should have nothing to worry about and that he probably drove off as he knew he was at fault and didn't want to waste his time.

Ideally, it goes no further. I'm not hurt, my bike is fine - my only gripe is that he laid the entire blame at my door when if he had been going a bit faster I could have been severely injured and the bike ruined. I'm a confident cyclist and have been dealing with the busiest roads in Leeds for many years now so I know I was not being irresponsible.

In light of the incident though, I was severely considering finally getting insurance or alternatively since joining tonight and posting for advice, the CTC membership. Would this be recommended?

northstar
Posts: 51
Joined: 21 May 2009, 6:55pm

Re: Road incident

Postby northstar » 21 Mar 2012, 12:14am

I can imagine the sight of a tall man in lycra having his bike pulled from underneath him by a smaller man dresses in smart work attire would seem rather strange.

She suggested I seek legal advice if he contacts with a hefty bill but that if it is say £50 or so, I pay it or face it going through a small claims court.

Here is a link to an awful MS paint version of events.

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/593/incidentw.png/


LOL, i can see the funny side to that too.

The fact he drove off would suggest he isn't going to take it any further and paints him in a bad light as opposed to you staying and talking to them.

Looking at your drawing, i'm still convinced as a driver and cyclist he is at fault in causing the collision.

sage advice gaz about the no win no fee route, if it does go further but I can't see it to be honest.

snibgo
Posts: 4604
Joined: 29 Jun 2010, 4:45am

Re: Road incident

Postby snibgo » 21 Mar 2012, 3:52am

Welcome to the forum, but sorry about the circumstances.

From your description, the driver ran into you from behind. He had no excuse, and was at fault.

If I was in your position, I'd write a full description of exactly what happened, just in case it was ever needed. Then I'd forget about it because I doubt the driver will do anything else. If he does, I'd say nothing to him. If he tok me to court, I'd defend myself (or get a lawyer).

On the wider point about emergency vehicles: many road users do daft things when they hear the sirens. Some car drivers seem to panic like a rabbit in headlights, and can't see anything apart from the blue lights. The car was "protecting" you from the ambulance, in the sense that the ambulance would have pulled far out to overtake the car. I don't think that you needed to overtake him.

Not that I'm saying the accident was even partly your fault. If a driver runs into the back of a bike because he wasn't looking, it's his fault.