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Accused will return to court next month to be committed for crown court trial

The lorry driver whose vehicle struck Times journalist Mary Bowers as she rode to work near the newspaper’s Wapping headquarters last November has appeared in court after being charged with dangerous driving in connection with the incident.

Romanian national Petre Beiu, aged 39, who was charged with the offence last month, appeared at Thames Magistrates’ Court yesterday, speaking only to confirm his identity reports ITV.com.

Beiu, who has not as yet entered a plea, will return to court on 22 May for committal to trial at a crown court. District Judge Gary Lucie granted the defendant bail, requiring him to surrender his passport and imposing a condition that he does not drive a heavy goods vehicle in the meantime.

In February this year, as a direct result of the incident that left Ms Bowers in a coma, The Times launched its Cities fit for Cycling campaign which has since been the subject of a parliamentary debate and has been influential in pushing the issue of cycle safety up the political agenda.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.

6 comments

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emily.b [16 posts] 4 years ago
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Heartbreaking, I read the article about this young journo. But I guess unless we pass laws people just can't be trusted to leave their !!!! mobile phones alone. Such a pointless loss and so terrible for her family. Sadly this will be seen as another 'cyclist' story and not one of practical manslaughter by reckless conduct. My thoughts are with her and every little recovery she can make!

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andybwhite [248 posts] 4 years ago
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I'm shocked that given the circumstances he is allowed to drive ANY vehicle 'in the meantime'.

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Spangly Shiny [112 posts] 4 years ago
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Agreed this is heartbreaking for the young lady and her family and I fervently hope that she will recover. However, before you all start burning this driver at the proverbial stake please be careful to read that he has, as yet, NOT been found guilty of anything!
Additionally, talking on a hands-free device is not yet illegal in this country.

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Spangly Shiny [112 posts] 4 years ago
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Waiting for the ordure.

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Lacticlegs [124 posts] 4 years ago
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no you're right - he was on a hands-free, and talking 'prior' to the incident...he might be guilty but then again he could be completely innocent - as awful as this is sometimes these things really are just tragic accidents...

We need better road and cycle networks - very very badly.  2

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wildnorthlands [32 posts] 4 years ago
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Unfortunately the idea that hands-free phones are safer than held ones when you're driving is wrong. Most people can drive one-handed reasonably safely - it is the concentration that is required to conduct a conversation on a mobile phone that is dangerous. Hands-free should have been banned at the same time as hand-held.