Knocked off bike: advice needed

by Ghedebrav   February 2, 2014  

Ok, so background: cycling back home from work last Wednesday I was passing on the inside of a queue of stationary traffic up to a junction with lights. As I was doing so, a car pulled out of the queue (without indicating or looking) into a side road, hitting me and knocking me for six onto the tarmac.

(N.B. I was wearing a helmet, hi vis jacket, had good working lights and reflectors and generally doing everything I'm supposed to)

Needless to say I was pretty shaken up - I've come off a few times before but never because of a car. I was battered and bruised but no serious physical bodily damage done. I did tear my (cycle-specific) jeans and gloves though, and while there is no apparent serious damage to the frame, fork, wheels or drivetrain, my mudguards, left brake/gear lever, bar tape and front rack all took a battering, as did (I think) my front brake callipers.

The driver was very apologetic (admitting he was in the wrong) and gave me his number to follow up (I haven't yet). There were also a couple of witnesses who stopped to help me, though stupidly I didn't take their details (though to be fair the wind was knocked out of me and I could barely talk). I also got the driver's reg number.

The question is, what next? My plan now is to get a quote tomorrow for the cost of repair and ask the driver to pay. But if it gets awkward, does anyone have any idea of my options? Was a crime committed, and do I have a 'nuclear option' of reporting the collision to the police (I'm not keen on being vindictive though, firstly because it was carelessness rather than recklessness, and secondly because I just want to get my bike fixed and put the whole thing behind me with a minimum of fuss)? All advice welcome!

10 user comments

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I was knocked off my bike a few months ago,the scene was attended by police and paramedic.tricky thing for you is if you now report it,the driver may now say he wasnt at fault.get in touch with your insurance company and give them all the details of accident and the driver details and see what comes of it

posted by Shanefutcher [121 posts]
2nd February 2014 - 23:47

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If you are a member of CTC or British Cycling, or have any other insurance, contact them once you have the quote. Also talk to the driver, they may settle without involving insurance companies, especially as the damage seems to be limited.

posted by Orbea Mike [18 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 0:07

113 Likes

Its a reportable road traffic collision (injury occurred) and by law has to be reported to the Police within 24 hours.

As you suffered an injury a collision booklet will be submitted and the Police will need to speak to the driver, obtain his insurance details and forward them to yourself. The driver, by law, has to report this to his insurance company.

You then contact the insurance company and they pay for your repairs - thats how its supposed to work. If the driver denies it then you argue the case, good luck with it all and let us know how you got on.

Any worries drop me a line through here and i will try and help with some advice. (i'm a Police officer by the way).

There are no stupid questions, just stupid people.

stumps's picture

posted by stumps [3067 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 10:04

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The driver committed a driving offence. You weren't seriously hurt, but that doesn't get away from the fact. Report it to the police.

If the police consider the offence to be minor, they will not pursue it. Experience from many on here suggests only more serious offences are pursued as the police have a lot on their plate.

But the driving offence occurred and should be reported, if not just for the fact that it'll add to statistics that are used to analyse driver behaviour and pinpoint safety actions to be made.

Not reporting the incident may make it difficult to make an insurance claim. Sometimes a private agreement between parties can work. When a car hit the rear of my motorbike some years bac, the driver was apologetic. A police officer saw the incident and came over but when she saw no-one was injured she asked if we needed assistance, which we didn't. I had my reservations but the driver was honest and paid for the repair. A colleague however had an incident with another driver in which the other person initially seemd friendly and willing to pay for the damage he'd caused, then changed his mind (presumably when he realised how much it'd cost).

OldRidgeback

posted by OldRidgeback [2492 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 10:50

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Just to play devil's advocate, were you in a designated cycle lane at the time?

My understanding is that undertaking is illegal in the UK, as is overtaking past junctions/side roads.

My fear is that this has the potential to back fire horribly if the other party does a bit of digging.

posted by Jimmy Ray Will [433 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 14:39

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Jimmy Ray Will wrote:
Just to play devil's advocate, were you in a designated cycle lane at the time?

My understanding is that undertaking is illegal in the UK, as is overtaking past junctions/side roads.

My fear is that this has the potential to back fire horribly if the other party does a bit of digging.

It isn't illegal.

posted by farrell [1769 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 15:20

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Cheers all. Pretty sure 'filtering' like that isn't illegal. And I'm not a member of BC/CTC and don't have insurance.

As it happens, I may regret that decision. Just had a quote for repairs and it comes to just short of £500 (gear shifter and front wheel both knacked; that takes the lion's share). If the driver doesn't answer his phone soon then we'll both regret it - I want an end to this sorry mess and I'm guessing he'd be happiest to get it over with without all the legal/police/insurance stuff (and I take the point about reporting it). If I really wanted to be unpleasant about it I could start keeping hold of my travel tickets and add in the cost of new gloves and jeans but I just want to get it behind me.

I just wish the guy had indicated or looked - ideally both, though just one would've avoided this whole sorry mess. I don't know if not indicating is a particularly Mancunian disease; drivers routinely don't seem to bother here, more so than anywhere else I've lived. It drives me up the wall, as a cyclist, a motorist and a pedestrian.

But really I want to get back on my bike Sad

Ghedebrav's picture

posted by Ghedebrav [1126 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 19:41

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Another update - spoke to the guy, now disputing his responsibility (I was going too fast, apparently) and he's claiming to have indicated 'at the last minute'.

Have a feeling I'm going to try to meet the guy in the middle, price-wise, and cut my losses. Pain in the backside though.

Ghedebrav's picture

posted by Ghedebrav [1126 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 21:24

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Filtering is legal if the traffic is 'moving in queues'

Drivers, if they wish to rely on insurance must NOT admit liability for any accident, he may just have read his policy.

Any Traffic incident resulting in an injury, must be reported by the driver of the motor vehicle.

If he hit you, rather than you riding into the side of him as he turned, I don't see how it can be viewed as anything other than his negligence.

All Campag

posted by Flying Scot [802 posts]
3rd February 2014 - 21:49

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Driver's being a tool. Sod it, he had his chance to settle outwith his insurance, and blew it. If you haven't already done so, get thee to Bootle Street and report it to police. GMP may have an unfortunate reputation (ahem), but at least it's reported.

Next, either make a claim directly against the insurer, or get yourself into a reputable cyclist friendly solicitors, especially if you have a PI claim to make. You got the reg, they can get the insurer's details (you can get it yourself from the Motor Insurers' Database.

Get a claim submitted for damage to your bike. If the driver describes the circs as described - turned left in front of a cyclist going "too fast, and indicated at last second", he may well be buggered, especially if the call comes to a cyclist friendly handler (they do exist Laughing. Even if it comes up as "disputed", the insurance company may make an offer anyway, as cheaper to concede fault on a WP basis rather than possibly run up costs disputing it.

I've told customers they're at fault, and oh boy it's fun hearing the response. Especially when the next call is to the cyclist to ask for a quote for replacement/repair. Hope all goes well - which road where you on?

posted by Argos74 [328 posts]
4th February 2014 - 0:12

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