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Accident question - new cyclist

AddsAdds Posts: 4
edited October 2010 in Commuting general
Hey

Was cycling along in the right lane in town when roadworks narrowed the road to one lane. I looked back and saw a gap in the left lane so filtered into it. The bus behind accelerated, undertook me and forced me wide, hitting me off my bike in the process. Fortunately I managed to slow down before I fell so no injuries and (ignoring scratches) bike seems OK. Bus driver waited til I got up, saw I was alright and then called me a fool and drove off. I was still a bit shocked so didn't get any details of the bus (I know which company though).

2 questions...
1. Should I/is it worth doing anything about this or should I just chalk it up to experience?
2. Have read the advice on accidents (thanks to author) so will get details/witnesses next time, but do u guys reckon that filtering should be avoided if poss to prevent a more serious accident next time

Any replies much appreciated...have just spent the last couple days getting really cross that he didn't even ask if I was OK. Had he done I'd have let it go! Also scared myself with the cyclist death stories that popped up on my first web search!

Posts

  • Did you signal your intentions well in advance, checking behind that you had reasonable and safe space to move? If you didn't, and possibly even if you did, drivers often underestimate the speed of cyclists and try to outrace them to get ahead in traffic. ALWAYS make your intentions clear when moving about in traffic, and NEVER take unnecessary risks where cars are concerned. It may be a slightly less exciting ride, you may be right, they may be wrong, but you can't win a fight with a lump of metal.

    You may simply both have raced for the same spot at the same time without noticing each other. If that's so, it's simply six of one and half a dozen of the other, and a lesson learned for you. Sure, the bus driver should have kept a more respectable distance from you (many motorists don't consider your bike a proper vehicle, hence you become invisible), but possibly you should not have tried to race such a big motherlover to a small gap.

    Once I had a coach right up my back passage on a busy town centre road, allowing me absolutely no gap, so I simply moved sideways instead, squishing myself up against the kerbside handrails to get out of his way and simply let him pass. Disappearing from the drivers view gave him a fright as he hadn't left himself space to react to any situation, but he still gave ME a mouthful of abuse, f'ing and blinding in front of a load of passengers, tsk.


    EDIT: i just noticed your comment about undertaking, in which case if he deliberately tried to push you aside, then the answer is a lot simpler, he's a to55er! If you can recall the exact time, and the route number and coach company, then you should be able to report him.

    Jam butties, officially endorsed by the Diddymen Olympic Squad
  • AddsAdds Posts: 4
    Thanks for the reply...TBH am a relative novice so didn't signal as I'm still a bit wobbly :oops: For the same reason though, I wasn't racing but was about to turn right up ahead and which probably provoked the undertake!

    Unfortunately, it all happened in a blur and I naively expected him to check I was all right so when he didn't I was so shocked I only starting thinking about what I should've done 10 mins later. So nothing apart from the bus company and the area.

    Cheers for the advice though. Will def be a lot more cautious in future. Wanted to moan without telling my girlfriend who has spent the past month bring convinced I'll come back dead on day :wink:
  • If the bus undertook you was in the wrong ,it is illegal to undertake.

    If you know the bus number and time the bus company will know who the driver was,worth making a formal complaint in my opinion.If they do not heed your complaint then you can always take it to the police,if the bus driver knocked you off and drove off again and did not report it that is an offense.

    As for the driver giving you abuse ignore it, it a normal reaction to a situation where you are in the wrong whereby they try and shift blame of themselves by blaming the other party.

    Check this guide put together by another cycling forum ...

    http://www.cyclechat.net/index.php?app= ... ach_id=157.

    Join the CTC,under £40 a year and you get 3rd party insurance and free legal advice as well as lots of useful stuff on their website.

    http://www.ctc.org.uk/
    FCN 3/5/9
  • Absolutely report it to the bus company and police - let police know you will provide further details when provided by bus company. He could have seriously injured or killed you! As above, it is illegal to undertake on single carriageway. Have your bike properly checked (esp. if it's carbon) for damage and the same for yourself as some injuries might not be obvious at the time. Remember, you got a fright and the adrenaline was pumping. You know the thing you are weak on - signalling - you really need to sort this and if possible, always make eye contact with the driver of any vehicle you may be manoeuvering around/in front of. Let us know how you get on.
    Visit Ireland - all of it! Cycle in Dublin and know fear!!
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  • spen666spen666 Posts: 17,709
    If the bus undertook you was in the wrong ,it is illegal to undertake.

    .....


    Actually this is a common misconception. There is no general offence of undertaking at all in England and Wales

    I always was under the impression that it was an offence to undertake, but I had cause to do some investigation in this matter and found out it is not an offence.

    The Police National Legal Database confirms this is indeed the position. It has been the subject of judicial scrutiny ( I cannot recall the case name, but If people want the case, I will be able to provide it next week as I have the details at work)
    Want to know the Spen666 behind the posts?
    Then read MY BLOG @ http://www.pebennett.com

    Twittering @spen_666
  • Fair enough i was only going by a google search :shock:

    pasted from driving wiki, legal status by country..

    Undertaking in an aggressive or reckless manner could be considered Careless Driving or more seriously Dangerous Driving, both of which are legally enforceable offences.

    If he did knock the OP off then and drove off without reporting it ( which is what i meant) it is an offense afaik.

    Anyway the good days far outweigh the bad ones, i ahve only been cycling 2 years as a commuter and touch wood i have never been hit yet.
    Bear with it , learn to try and read other intentions,assert your right to be on the road whilst keeping yourself safe and most of all ...

    ENJOY IT !!
    FCN 3/5/9
  • Fair enough i was only going by a google search :shock:

    pasted from driving wiki, legal status by country..

    Undertaking in an aggressive or reckless manner could be considered Careless Driving or more seriously Dangerous Driving, both of which are legally enforceable offences.

    If he did knock the OP off then and drove off without reporting it ( which is what i meant) it is an offense afaik.

    Anyway the good days far outweigh the bad ones, i ahve only been cycling 2 years as a commuter and touch wood i have never been hit yet.
    Bear with it , learn to try and read other intentions,assert your right to be on the road whilst keeping yourself safe and most of all ...

    ENJOY IT !!
    FCN 3/5/9
  • Somtimes you just have to suck it up.. when you know there in the wrong catch up with them and give them a mouthfull - I've unfortunatly broken a BMW's wing mirror as he hit me .. or maybe a few mins after when I got angry but .. meh!!
  • I would never encourage anyone to deliberately damage another persons vehicle. Road rage against cyclists isn't exactly uncommon; neither is motorists trying to knock cyclists off their bike for the sheer enjoyment of it. Imagine angering one of this type of driver, you may be lucky keeping your life.

    Interesting article cyberknight, I'll have to have a good look at that myself!
    You know the thing you are weak on - signalling - you really need to sort this and if possible, always make eye contact with the driver

    Agreed, very important aspects of cycling safety, clear signaling and eye contact, both made well in advance of any manoeuvre. As a cyclist you should be cautious but confident, which seems contradictory but you soon get the hang of it; try to stay within the law; assume motorists are morons, whether well meaning ones or otherwise and that mean's you'll often have to do their thinking for them; dont be afraid to claim your roadspace ( as long as it's safe to do so); be polite and show appreciation to motorists who show good manners.

    Jam butties, officially endorsed by the Diddymen Olympic Squad
  • AddsAdds Posts: 4
    Thanks for all the replies and good advice..........great article, which gave me some good tips, and the signalling is getting there! :)
  • pretty much all the advice above is right depending on the circumstances at the time. Be confident but always cautious, assume they havent seen you. Wear bright clothing make yourself as visible as possible. Get some sort of noise as well like a VLoud bell,air horn or my favourite a loud whistle. Never undertake a large vehicle at lights or junctions or at anytime really. If Im going to overtake only if i consider it safe to do so i always do it on the outside and give them a blast on the whistle as i come along side.. If im at lights ill always look back to get eye contact and if im still not sure i give them a wave. 8)
  • UchigaUchiga Posts: 230
    Sounds like you were in the right yet not if that makes sense. You should have signalled but you saw a clear gap and if it was clear and you took it you should have had it. A Bus will simply have to wait for you. In theory both of you though yourself and the bus driver have broken the law in failing to report an accident on the road. Sometimes though its easier to do that... But im not saying you should do that all the time.

    Advice for next time and from learnign from this experience is be more confident in your moves. Signal when you do make moves and be sure to position yourself in the road so that you have a bit of choice in where a vehicle over takes you.

    There are times when i ride in the middle of the road to stop cars from over taking me. They honk me and beep at me but i dont care. I'm doing about 25mph on a flat usually and there are cars coming the other way its not clear for them to over take and so i position myself so that they dont make a risky over take. If they do go for an over take the trick is to accelerate as they over take and move slowly to the right. Gives them a bit of a fright when they see there over taking gap slowly shrink.... I've given one car a shock as they realised they were pretty much on the other side of the road as the car coming towards him flashed him and honked. I was still only halfway in the road getting ready to turn right at the junction coming up. No car over takes me in the 50 metres before a junction. If they do they get a finger along the edge of there car...

    Anyhow i've rambled on. Just keep a decent position in the road and you should be alright in future. :P
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