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Updated: 44 min 46 sec ago

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

20 March 2015 - 11:23am
iviehoff wrote:Let's try to understand where it comes from by looking at the kind of case where I think even you would call it an accident. If you were walking down the street (in Britain where extreme weather is uncommon) and suddenly a tornado or lightning strike caused masonry from an adjacent building to fall and injure you, I don't think you would have much luck pinning the blame for it on the owner of the building, unless it was evidently a dangerous structure, and I think you would accept it is reasonable to call this an unfortunate accident. (Nor would anyone say you were to blame for your own injury.) Thus, I think, we have to acknowledge that some outcomes are accidents, even when some other party (in this case the building owner whose building was inadequate to stand up to extreme weather) could in principle be found responsible. There's a limit to how much responsibility we can place on third parties to look after others, because otherwise life just becomes too costly if all houses have to be built to tornado standard in mild-climate Britain. This is essentially what has happened in the cyclist case - the other party has not been found negligent, not that the cyclist was themselves to blame. I'm not saying that's right, I'm just saying it's what happens.

Except that in your example, the building owner is still liable for the injury and his / her insurance would pay compensation unless the owner were shown to be negligent, for example, not having repaired masonry that was known to be in poor condition.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

20 March 2015 - 10:31am
Your analogy just isn't correct and the police are saying the cyclist was more to blame by not wearing hi-viz and helmet and by suggesting the cyclist must have moved suddenly and without looking into the path of the car( without any evidence). The driver is excused for not seeing the cyclist due to the sea of light making it difficult to see someone in front of her.It shouldn't be for the police to decide whether a jury will convict that should be for an independent prosecutor working for the public interest.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

20 March 2015 - 10:12am
Bicycler wrote:That news has hit me quite hard. A cyclist meeting all legal requirements can be hit from behind by a car and be to blame for his own death.

I despair.
It isn't news, it's been a common feature of the application of law for a long time. But no one is blaming the cyclist.

Let's try to understand where it comes from by looking at the kind of case where I think even you would call it an accident. If you were walking down the street (in Britain where extreme weather is uncommon) and suddenly a tornado or lightning strike caused masonry from an adjacent building to fall and injure you, I don't think you would have much luck pinning the blame for it on the owner of the building, unless it was evidently a dangerous structure, and I think you would accept it is reasonable to call this an unfortunate accident. (Nor would anyone say you were to blame for your own injury.) Thus, I think, we have to acknowledge that some outcomes are accidents, even when some other party (in this case the building owner whose building was inadequate to stand up to extreme weather) could in principle be found responsible. There's a limit to how much responsibility we can place on third parties to look after others, because otherwise life just becomes too costly if all houses have to be built to tornado standard in mild-climate Britain. This is essentially what has happened in the cyclist case - the other party has not been found negligent, not that the cyclist was themselves to blame. I'm not saying that's right, I'm just saying it's what happens.

This is a far from unique case. Cars have repeatedly killed cyclists from behind in foggy situations and when blinded by the sun and not been found to be negligent. There was the case where a woman overtook two cyclists on a blind bend, then perceived a car coming the other way, went close to the cyclists to avoid the car, but one cyclist, an inexperienced one, wobbled, fell off, and ended up dead under her car. A friend of my father was struck and badly injured by a car pulling out of a drive into the road in good visibility, but was able to argue no negligence similar to this case, and the police didn't prosecute.

This is of course quite wrong. People should have a duty of care to keep a watch for slower road users. Slow vulnerable road users are not so very unlikely an occurance like the tornado, thus people should be required to cater for their presence. And if they are there to be seen failing to see them because you were momentarily distracted is not an adequate excuse. They should have a duty of care to respond appropriately in fog and difficult sun conditions to ensure that they don't run down cyclists they may not be able to see. But most jury members are car drivers, and unless the law is rewritten explicitly to specify that situations such as these are negligence, juries will continue to acquit, and the police won't bother prosecuting because they know juries usually acquit.

Of course even if the law is improved as I suggest, it will occasionally remain the case that a cyclist will be proceeding blamelessly along the road and be killed without any blame being ascribed to the driver. If the driver suddenly collapsed with previously undiagnosed epilepsy, or an escaped cow suddenly ran out into the road, or something like that, it could still happen. Maybe a driver could even get away with blaming the bee that stung them.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

20 March 2015 - 1:29am
Isn't it obvious that the police regard to the law in total is appalling.
They're corrupt and political in total.
There's hardly a day's gone by this week when I haven't heard or read stories of corruption,incompetence,lies and deceit by high ranking police officers,Hillsborough,Cyril Smith and this case to name a few.
Fizzing would describe my feelings of disgust toward them and I have no faith whatsoever in them.

My heart goes out to the family of this unfortunate man and I feel for them,my family went through the same police incompetence when we lost our granddaughter some two and half years ago.They're despicable.

Re: Cycle Schemes - are they still worth it?

19 March 2015 - 11:53pm
The other thing to think about is for those people fortunate to have kids claiming child benefit and earning between £50k and £60k.

For someone with two kids they get £1770 a year. For every £100 over £50k they lose 1% - so that's £17.70. So, If that person is on, say, £55k and they buy a bike for £1k - that will reduce the amount of child benefit that has to be paid back by £177. This is on top of the 42%. Obviously, there's the 7% final fee as well as any surcharge that the shop adds on.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

19 March 2015 - 10:03pm
The CTC publication on this topic....

http://www.ctc.org.uk/news/20150319-met ... mason-case

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

19 March 2015 - 10:01pm
Richard D
Congrats for managing to include,no less than three times,that beautiful word 'wazzock''* into your post





*The Lancashire spelling is 'wazzack' .
Which is similar to 'wazzum'(worm) which was used extensively when fishing when I wer uh lad.
Shouting up the canal bank to a fellow angler and friend the words ''hast any wazzums,a'll swap thee fer some mags*''

*maggots.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

19 March 2015 - 8:11pm
Linked from the Road CC article, the Investigating Officer’s Report, explaining Met's reasons for not referring Mason case to CPS:
http://road.cc/sites/default/files/IOR% ... 0Mason.doc
gives a fair bit more detail. Whilst the helmet and clothing comments are disgusting it does indicate a lack of witnesses of the actual collision.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

19 March 2015 - 8:00pm
The comments from the Metropolitan Police are pretty disgusting.

Here in Scotland I'm pretty sure every road death would be investigated and a report submitted to the Procurator Fiscal who decides on prosecution or not and I was under the impression that England had adopted that system some years ago.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

19 March 2015 - 7:52pm
That news has hit me quite hard. A cyclist meeting all legal requirements can be hit from behind by a car and be to blame for his own death.

I despair.

Re: Cyclist defence fund Michael Mason

19 March 2015 - 7:29pm
update, the private prosecution is going ahead..the police are an utter disgrace, I have had a few hours for my anger to subside and yet the words that are in my head are not printable here, my blood is still boiling tbh.....
The family are devastated and we as cyclists are left on an absolute limb by these 'scum', because that is the only word I think I can that applies to those that made this decision. The driver of the car is not much better.
http://road.cc/content/news/146173-inco ... ent-337003

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

19 March 2015 - 7:28pm
Tractor drivers - and many other farm vehicles - are often very considerate.

4x4 drivers are often selfish wazzocks. Audi, BMW and especially Mercedes drivers are often selfish wazzocks.

But there is a special place in hell reserved for drivers of 4x4 Audis/BMWs/Mercedes. They are almost without exception selfish, dangerous wazzocks.

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

19 March 2015 - 6:45pm
blackbike wrote:I find it odd that 4x4 drivers who lumber towards me on narrow country lanes never want to pull over on to muddy verges so I can get past.

Like other drivers they expect me to get out of their way and get just as annoyed when I don't.

Why don't they use the off-road capabilities of their pride and joy?

Can't get them dirty can they?

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

19 March 2015 - 6:44pm
Next time you are in a car park, just take note of the Chelsea Tractor attempts to park! That gives you an insight into why they pass so close - they have no idea of the width or the length of their cars!

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

19 March 2015 - 6:12pm
I find it odd that 4x4 drivers who lumber towards me on narrow country lanes never want to pull over on to muddy verges so I can get past.

Like other drivers they expect me to get out of their way and get just as annoyed when I don't.

Why don't they use the off-road capabilities of their pride and joy?

Re: Didn't know cyclists could be fined for speeding!

19 March 2015 - 5:03pm
A valid point.

I think that I can justify my differing attitude there. Where cycles are legitimate users of a road, path, trail etc. it is only right that the police should be required to supply evidence of how a particular cyclist's use of that path was inappropriate. This requires a certain amount of evidence which might mean that, regrettably, some cyclists who reasonably ought to be prosecuted may not be.

Cyclists are not legitimate users of a pavement. It is by definition a "footpath or causeway by the side of any road made or set apart for the use or accommodation of foot passengers". When encountering a nuisance pavement cyclist there is no reason for the police to have to collect the substantial amount of evidence to support an inconsiderate cycling prosecution. The cyclist was cycling somewhere he ought not to have been. I fully believe that the police should use discretion in applying the law and that it is not in the public interest to fine people who are causing no harm and pose no risk but I also believe that removing the prohibition of pavement cycling would lead to police being effectively powerless to deal with the many minor but anti-social acts of pavement cycling we see so frequently in our towns.

Re: Didn't know cyclists could be fined for speeding!

19 March 2015 - 4:36pm
Bicycler wrote:A few years ago my elbow was clipped (painfully) on a pavement by a passing cyclist who was travelling reasonably slowly but had not announced his presence and just tried to squeeze past me. If I had moved to the right he could have run straight into my back or I could have knocked him into the road. If a police officer (or PCSO) had seen this I would have expected him to be given a fine for pavement cycling. I would not have expected him to be summoned to the Magistrates Court to answer a charge of inconsiderate cycling.
Yet if the above had happened on a shared use path there would be no option to issue a FPN. It's either inconsiderate cycling, furious cycling or nothing more than some words of advice.

Re: Cycle Schemes - are they still worth it?

19 March 2015 - 3:51pm
pete75 wrote:Section 5 of the governments guidance to this scheme starts with the following. Note the first two sentences.

"To help employees take advantage of this tax-free benefit, an employer can simply
buy a cycle and cyclists’ safety equipment and loan it to an employee for qualifying
journeys to work. This arrangement means that the employee's normal salary
arrangements are not affected and is sometimes referred to as a ‘salary plus’
arrangement. It may be, however, that the employer wants to recover the cost of
providing the cycle and safety equipment loaned to the employee. Usually this would
be done through a salary sacrifice arrangement. "

Ooh - I might have to keep that in mind if I get a contract that I just submitted...

Re: Didn't know cyclists could be fined for speeding!

19 March 2015 - 3:50pm
pwa wrote:Any discussion about bad or dangerous cycling is bound to be a delicate matter on this forum because it is easy to sound like you think cyclists are the main problem on the roads (or footpaths). I suspect none of us think that.
Indeed, and I don't think misbehaving cyclists should be a priority but, like you, I don't think that removes the need for the police to be able to deal with them where they are encountered.

3 examples: Most days I am passed on the pavement alongside a busy road by two early high school age schoolgirls on bikes. They don't get much above walking pace and they cause nobody any harm. I could see no point in these responsible girls being reprimanded.

A few years ago my elbow was clipped (painfully) on a pavement by a passing cyclist who was travelling reasonably slowly but had not announced his presence and just tried to squeeze past me. If I had moved to the right he could have run straight into my back or I could have knocked him into the road. If a police officer (or PCSO) had seen this I would have expected him to be given a fine for pavement cycling. I would not have expected him to be summoned to the Magistrates Court to answer a charge of inconsiderate cycling.

A few decades ago a cyclist descending a hill at a high speed ran straight into the back of me on an unlit path (not a pavement). He had no lights and was somehow managing to wheel a second bike by his side despite the relatively high speed. He was obviously distracted and blinded enough not to see me. I was knocked to the ground and badly bruised and needed stitches for a gash in my side. At the time I wrote it off as an odd accident. I would like to think that if a police officer saw something like that now or somebody was more seriously injured that the cyclist would be prosecuted. That is where the Offences Against the Person 'wanton or furious driving' offence is still relevant.

Re: It me or do SUVs alway drive to close

19 March 2015 - 3:33pm
Living in a very rural area, most 4x4s are driven by folks who really need them to get about in the winter (including Me!), and most drive considerately.
We don't see too many toy 4x4s, aka SUVs
My worst experiences come at weekends when folks come out for "a drive in the country" and haven't a clue how to behave on rural roads.
After all, how can you tell where to drive if there is no kerb or central white line?
They are the same ones who crawl down the main dale road at 25mph and only speed up when they go past the 30mph sign into a village.
Incidentally, the visibility for the driver from a traditional LR Defender is a lot better than from most modern cars - it has proper "corners" that you can see.
But of course that all has to change in the interests of safety, according to the EU or somesuch.

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