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In the wake of the Charlie Alliston case there's only one sensible thing to do — but you're not going to like it

In the aftermath of the Alliston case, what should you do if you are a cyclist involved in a crash with a pedestrian?

I have one word of advice for you: Leave.

That’s right. Leave the scene. Get out of Dodge. Get away from the situation as fast as you can. Say nothing to anyone. Give nobody your details. Don’t hang around long enough for anyone to get their phone out. Split. Bugger off. Go home the long way — down as many alleys and across as many parks as possible to avoid CCTV.

Say nothing about the crash to anyone. Don’t discuss it in forums. Don’t tweet or post on Facebook about it. Don’t search on Google for news of the crash or its aftermath. Don’t get your bike repaired. Carry on with your life as if nothing happened.

“But, John,” I can hear you say, “that’s awful advice. Ethically you should stop and help, and isn’t leaving the scene an offence?”

Road Traffic Act: leaving the scene

Last point first: no, it isn’t. Section 170 of the Road Traffic Act makes it an offence for the driver of a motor vehicle to leave the scene of a crash, but it specifically only applies to drivers of “mechanically propelled vehicles” as it quaintly calls them. (That means an engine or motor; your bike’s chain and gears don’t count as the propulsion comes from your legs.)

Section 168 makes it an offence to refuse to give your name and address to “any person having reasonable ground” to require it. But they have to ask for it first. Leave before anyone can ask your name, and you’re in the clear. Martin Porter QC, who drew my attention to this part of the Road Traffic Act, added: “I have never yet been supplied with name and address by [a] motorist I have reasonably suspected of careless driving. Asked a few times.”

Ethically, yes, all of this is dreadful. But the Alliston case has put cyclists in the position where we cannot be sure of being dealt with justly. In fact, we can be sure that we will not be treated justly.

There is no way that Charlie Alliston was guilty of manslaughter, and he was rightly acquitted.

But there is also no way he was riding furiously and wantonly. He was riding at 18mph. Traffic and parked vehicles around him left him with nowhere to go and when he yelled to warn Kim Briggs she stepped back into his path. If that’s furious and wanton riding, I’m a banana.

The brakeless fixie issue

You could argue that Alliston would not have ended up in court in the first place if he hadn’t been riding a bike that wasn’t street legal. Would the Met and the CPS have gone after him if he’d been riding a fixie with a front brake? I believe they would.

The tide is turning against cycling in London. The nonsensical claims that a few short stretches of protected cycleway have caused huge increases in congestion and pollution have stuck. Mayor Sadiq Khan has cancelled or postponed shovel-ready cycling schemes and TfL has mysteriously forgotten how to design new ones if its hopeless, inept Nine Elms and Fiveways schemes are anything to go by. I expect that before the end of Khan’s first term, TfL will announce that Cycle Superhighway 3, the world-class protected cycle lane along the Embankment is to be ripped up.

Meanwhile cycling and walking commissioner Will Norman doesn’t realise that his job is to enable active travel, not to run spin for Sadiq Khan’s preference for roads and buses. Khan is running a PR mayoralty, all talk and no delivery, and calling on others to fix problems like air pollution that are well within his power. But to do so would put him into conflict with the influential bus, taxi and haulage lobbies.

With public opinion increasingly hostile to cycling, the Met and the CPS would have gone after Alliston anyway. After all, a mother of two was, tragically, dead. Something Had To Be Done, and prosecuting Alliston was Something. Alliston had dug a huge hole for himself by his forum and Evening Standard postings. He really was a dream defendant — if you’re a prosecutor.

Given the general ignorance about cycling, a fixie with a front brake could still be easily represented as the equivalent to a Formula One car, and equally inappropriate for the streets. Alliston’s lawyer failed to challenge the Met’s nonsensical braking distance tests in either premise or execution; it’s vanishingly unlikely he’d have been able to mount a defence against the charge of furious and wanton cycling even if Alliston had been riding a bike with brakes.

And I don’t believe the bike made any substantial difference. The instinctive reaction when a pedestrian steps into your path is to try and avoid hitting them. Yes, you’ll slow down too and Alliston did, but Kim Briggs stepped back into his path, they butted heads and she fell to the ground. Had he been going slower (as he would not have had time to stop, despite the Met’s staged video), she might still have fallen, she might still have hit her head on the ground. We just don’t know, and we cannot therefore know that Alliston’s inability to stop faster was the primary cause of Kim Briggs’s death.

The not guilty verdict shows that the jury did not think it was. If Alliston was guilty of an illegal act in not having a front brake, and that illegal act led to Kim Briggs’s death, then he was guilty of manslaughter. If he was not guilty, then his illegal act did not cause Kim Briggs’s death.

That also makes the conviction for wanton and furious driving unsafe too, unless the jury took the view that the injuries that Kim Briggs sustained as a result of Alliston riding into her did not cause her death. That would be a somewhat bizarre conclusion, but that’s juries for you. However, I’m not a lawyer and there may be some twist to the legal reasoning here that I’ve missed. Happy to be corrected in the comments or via Twitter.

The justice system is stacked against cyclists

More broadly, the Alliston case is only the latest example of the justice system failing a cyclist, but it’s unusual in that the rider was accused of perpetrating a fatal crash, instead of being its victim.

London’s police have largely been on the back foot when it comes to cycling since the debacle of Operation Safeway, in which the police targeted minor cycling infringements after several cyclists were killed in London in November, rather than going after the motor vehicle behaviour that kills cyclists. They were pilloried for it by cycling groups, and rightly so.

Presented with an unsympathetic defendant in a cocky, pierced teenager riding a hipster bike, the Met and the Crown Prosecution Service must have thought all their Christmases had come at once.

They therefore charged Alliston with offences that had to be heard in Crown Court, rather than any of the more appropriate lesser offences that would have been heard by magistrates, as Martin Porter QC has pointed out.

There’s a legal maxim that if you want to get off a charge, you go for a jury trial if you can. Juries are composed of people who can’t convince the court they’re too important to be excused jury duty. They tend to be sympathetic to mundane criminality, which is why there are so many breathtaking not guilty verdicts in cases of causing death by careless or dangerous driving.

Charlie Alliston, Daily Mail stereotype

Unfortunately for him, with his tattoos and piercings, Charlie Alliston was as close as it gets to the Daily Mail stereotype of an arrogant, reckless, young tearaway, scofflaw cyclist. There was no way he was going to get a sympathetic hearing from a jury of Londoners who are encouraged to hate cyclists by every story about cycling on the local news, in the London papers, in the national papers, on the BBC and on LBC.

And so it went. Anyone who rides bike knows Alliston’s account of the crash was entirely plausible. Between a parked lorry and moving cars he had nowhere to go. Kim Briggs stepped back into his path (presumably seeing the cars, but not registering Alliston) and he was unable to avoid her.

But by bringing the absurd charge of manslaughter, the CPS could be confident they’d get Alliston for something. I can imagine the jury room discussions. “All right, it’s not manslaughter, but the arrogant git’s guilty of something. What’s this wanton and furious thing? Up to two years bird? Yeah, that’ll do.”

Lynch mob

The resulting atmosphere is that of a lynch mob. I’ve seen posts hoping that Alliston gets anally raped if he goes to prison, and wanting to know his usual riding route so they can string wire in his path. Have you ever seen that for a killer driver?

I fear for the safety of the cyclist next time one of us is involved in a crash with a pedestrian who doesn’t immediately get up and walk away. By bringing this spurious prosecution, the CPS has failed in its duty to act in the public interest. It has made the roads more dangerous, not less.

Cyclists have long known that we will not get justice if we are victims of road violence. Now we can be sure we will not get justice if we are accused of being its perpetrators.

And that means our only recourse is to get away from a crash immediately.

Footnote: If you do choose to stay at the scene of a crash, and there’s even the slightest possibility you might be blamed (in other words, any crash at all in the current climate) say nothing to the police without a lawyer present. Don’t try and be helpful, don’t give a statement. Ask for a lawyer and shut up till he or she arrives.

Acknowledged by the Telegraph as a leading cycling journalist, John Stevenson has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for CyclingNews.com. Along with road.cc editor Tony Farelly, John was on the launch team for BikeRadar.com and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of TotalWomensCycling.com before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined road.cc in 2013 and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

185 comments

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes
kieren_lon wrote:
davel wrote:

You seem to have an unreasonable amount of faith in the system.

Yes & no. It's one of the best in the world with the privy council is still the highest court of appeal for many countries. However, it's not perfect and that is recognised with the right to appeal a verdict.

The privy council is the highest court of appeal for many countries largely because Britain historically took over many countries - usually not in a particularly lawful manner. It's not really a recommendation of the purity and flawlessness of British justice that it's less corrupt than Zimbabwe, say.

And 'the right to appeal a verdict' doesn't actually make it perfect. The imperfections remain. It has loads of them, most of them reflecting the various imbalances of power in society.

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
6 likes
nbrus wrote:
Bentrider wrote:

Alliston was a pillock for riding an unroadworthy bike and for not even knowing the rules about brakes.

He should be treated as harshly as the man who, driving at speed on an icy road with three defective tyres, lost control of his vehicle and collided with a group of cyclists, killing 4 of them.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1525561/Driver-fined-180-for-defective-t...

Tragic outcome, but fair sentencing...

Quote:

Robert Harris, 47, was fined for having three defective tyres when he lost control on "black ice" and ploughed into 12 members of Rhyl Cycling Club, killing four and injuring the other eight.

Llandudno magistrates were told that the defective tyres did not contribute to the collision, which was believed to have been caused by the weather.

...police investigation found that Mr Harris's defective tyres - the front pair and rear nearside - were not the cause of the crash.

Here you are again, defending the status quo. Thank you Dr Pangloss.

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:
nbrus wrote:
Bentrider wrote:

Alliston was a pillock for riding an unroadworthy bike and for not even knowing the rules about brakes.

He should be treated as harshly as the man who, driving at speed on an icy road with three defective tyres, lost control of his vehicle and collided with a group of cyclists, killing 4 of them.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1525561/Driver-fined-180-for-defective-t...

Tragic outcome, but fair sentencing...

Quote:

Robert Harris, 47, was fined for having three defective tyres when he lost control on "black ice" and ploughed into 12 members of Rhyl Cycling Club, killing four and injuring the other eight.

Llandudno magistrates were told that the defective tyres did not contribute to the collision, which was believed to have been caused by the weather.

...police investigation found that Mr Harris's defective tyres - the front pair and rear nearside - were not the cause of the crash.

Here you are again, defending the status quo. Thank you Dr Pangloss.

What's your opinion on that case? Should the punishment fit the crime, or should it fit the outcome?

 

 

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charlie_L [3 posts] 2 years ago
7 likes
John Stevenson wrote:

He was riding at 18mph. Traffic and parked vehicles around him left him with nowhere to go and when he yelled to warn Kim Briggs she stepped back into his path. If that’s furious and wanton riding, I’m a banana.

Yes you are a banana.
The first charge was "causing bodily harm by wanton or furious driving". That he caused "bodily harm" is undeniable. The primary cause for that harm was that he did not stop or manage to swerve around Kim Briggs in time. The fundamental rule of safe riding or driving is that you go slow enough to be able to avoid hazards or stop. Alliston claims to have been a cycle courier. Every courier, regular rider and driver in Central London knows that pedestrians step out all the time, they know pedestrians walk around with their heads buried in their phones, they know pedestrians sometimes stop then step back or forward unpredictably.
Alliston's crime was that he was negligent, careless or wanton. He was going too fast for the conditions - ie. too fast because thousands of pedestrians wander all around the Old street area and too fast because his fixed wheel braking (or cycling skill) was inadequate. Some have argued that 18mph is not very fast. It is well above the average (median) speed of vehicles on this road, it was well above the speed at which Alliston could safely control his bike.
Riding without a front brake is against the law. In the logic of roads policing that justifies a manslaughter charge. I am happy that at least a quarter of the jury members saw through the clumsy, contrived police 'evidence' on stopping distance.
There may be elements of rough justice in this trial outcome. But justice is never fair. Every day millions of drivers and cyclists act negligently, carelessly or wantonly. The outcomes are rarely serious and when they are we often get away with it - that is not just, but it happens. We have no moral right to complain when the justice system bears down on one of us for carelessness resulting in death or injury.
To suggest that we should always run away, deny involvement, be the hit and run killers is indefensible. An extension of that logic is that we should not take any care of other road users, irrespective of their vulnerability. Your suggestion leads to careless, wanton driving/riding being the acceptable norm.
The truckloads of journalistic venom aimed a cyclists over the last few weeks is not simply the result of Alliston's actions nor of the police prosecution. It is the result of a deeper malaise in our car dependent society. Your advice to cyclists simply feeds that psychosis.
Yes John, you are a banana, a rotten smelly banana.

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beezus fufoon [972 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes
charlie_L wrote:

...
The truckloads of journalistic venom aimed a cyclists over the last few weeks is not simply the result of Alliston's actions nor of the police prosecution. It is the result of a deeper malaise in our car dependent society. Your advice to cyclists simply feeds that psychosis...

surely the nature of psychosis is that it is immune to the re-presentations it receives - in other words, the question of how cyclists come across is utterly irrelevant...

your argument is a bit like saying that if only witches whould've been a bit nicer, they might've garnered a little more sympathy as they were being burned at the stake.

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Ademort [1 post] 2 years ago
3 likes

Tbh the Charlie Alliston case was a joke. However i think  that Charlie Allistons attitude and complete lack of remorse played a big part in the CPS decision to try him for manslaughter.

By all accounts he shouted at the woman as she lay seriously injured on the floor and then placed  comments about the accident on social media blaming her for the accident, as well as never once being apologetic for what happened that day.He really created his own downfall. If i was the person who crashed into this woman i would have done all i could to help her and certainly would never have used social media to blame her for the accident. I,m sure i would have been gutted to hear that she had died and was the mother of two children. I would most definitely have asked to speak to her family and answer any questions they may have , if this would be allowed or not i don,t know. 

                                  In my opinion Charlie Alliston did all the things you should not do.unfortunately for him he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. One thing certainly springs to mind. Charlie Alliston said that even if he had  brakes he would not have had time to use them . Thats nonsense, if you have time to shout twice at somebody then  you certainly have time to pull your brakes.He is obviously a very inexperienced cyclist. The charge of wanton or furious cycling i find also a joke. Again it comes down to Charlie Alliston. On one side you have a very arrogant, unremorseful young man  riding a bicycle thats not street legal. he collided with a woman who later died. At the scene he was seen shouting at her then he placed comments blaming her for the accident on social media and apparently shown no remorse for the accident.

                         On the other side you have a woman in the prime of her life married with two children.

I feel that police and the CPS want to charge this young man with something purely to give some sort of justice to the family of the deceased woman. It reminds me of a case years ago when a man killed four cyclists and seriously injured eight others after skidding on black ice. He only got fined for having three bald tyres.  

 

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peted76 [1585 posts] 2 years ago
4 likes
beezus fufoon wrote:

your argument is a bit like saying that if only witches whould've been a bit nicer, they might've garnered a little more sympathy as they were being burned at the stake.

Sir Vladimir: There are ways of telling whether she is a witch.
Peasants: Are there? Well then tell us!
Sir Vladimir: Tell me... what do you do with witches?
Peasants: Burn'em! Burn them up! 
Sir Vladimir: What do you burn apart from witches?
Peasants: More witches! 
Peasants: Wood!
Sir Vladimir: So, why do witches burn?
Peasants: Cuz they're made of... wood?
Sir Vladimir: Gooood. So, how do we tell if she is made of wood?
Peasants: Build a bridge out of her!
Sir Vladimir: Ahh, but can you not also make bridges out of stone?
Peasants: Oh yeah...
Sir Vladimir: Does wood sink in water?
Peasants: No
Peasants: No. It floats!
Peasants: Let's throw her into the bog! 
Sir Vladimir: What also floats in water?
Peasants: Bread ! Apples! Very small rocks! Cider! Grape gravy! Cherries! Mud!
King Arthur: A Duck! (all look and stare at king)
Sir Vladimir: Exactly! So, logically...
Peasants: If she ways the same as a duck... she's made of wood!
Sir Vladimir: And therefore...
Peasants: A witch! 
Sir Vladimir: We shall use my largest scales.

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
peted76 wrote:

Sir Vladimir: There are ways of telling whether she is a witch.
Peasants: Are there? Well then tell us!
Sir Vladimir: Tell me... what do you do with witches?
Peasants: Burn'em! Burn them up! 
Sir Vladimir: What do you burn apart from witches?
Peasants: More witches! 
Peasants: Wood!
Sir Vladimir: So, why do witches burn?
Peasants: Cuz they're made of... wood?
Sir Vladimir: Gooood. So, how do we tell if she is made of wood?
Peasants: Build a bridge out of her!
Sir Vladimir: Ahh, but can you not also make bridges out of stone?
Peasants: Oh yeah...
Sir Vladimir: Does wood sink in water?
Peasants: No
Peasants: No. It floats!
Peasants: Let's throw her into the bog! 
Sir Vladimir: What also floats in water?
Peasants: Bread ! Apples! Very small rocks! Cider! Grape gravy! Cherries! Mud!
King Arthur: A Duck! (all look and stare at king)
Sir Vladimir: Exactly! So, logically...
Peasants: If she ways the same as a duck... she's made of wood!
Sir Vladimir: And therefore...
Peasants: A witch! 
Sir Vladimir: We shall use my largest scales.

If that's supposed to be an example of how to reach an unfair verdict by starting with a biased opinion and making the evidence fit, then it's brilliant!

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davel [2723 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes

Bedevere, innit?

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jh27 [233 posts] 2 years ago
5 likes
darrenleroy wrote:

18mph on a very busy road with pedestrians all around is too fast. 

 

No, 18 mph is the recommended maximum cycling speed on a path shared by pedestrians and cyclists.  Stepping out without looking on a 'very busy road' on the other hand...

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oceandweller [95 posts] 2 years ago
7 likes

"I’ve seen posts hoping that Alliston gets anally raped if he goes to prison, and wanting to know his usual riding route so they can string wire in his path. Have you ever seen that for a killer driver?"

Ummm, well, yes I have actually. Regularly, right here on road.cc, in the comments after every report of a driver getting a 2-year ban & £100 fine for killing a cyclist with an appalling & egregious example of not giving a damn about anyone else on the road. But hey-ho, you can never have too much hate in the world, eh?

Remind me again, what is it two wrongs don't make?

There **is** a deep & terrible injustice here, but it's not that Alliston has been convicted under a stupid 19th century law. Instead the real horror of this case is that had Alliston been driving a car rather than riding a bicycle the police would have written it off as another sad accident & no-one's fault, a la Michael Mason. **Everyone** who's responsible for a serious traffic incident should be prosecuted & convicted, not just cyclists.

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jh27 [233 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
hawkinspeter wrote:

I personally think that he was riding carelessly (whether or not that is wanton and furious is another question) as he didn't have sufficient brakes for going at 18mph.

 

"Whosoever, having the charge of any carriage or vehicle, shall by wanton or furious driving or racing, or other wilful misconduct, or by wilful neglect, do or cause to be done any bodily harm to any person whatsoever, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years ..."

 

I can see how it could be construed that he cause harm by wilfully neglecting to install a front brake.  Also what is 'wanton driving' the dictionary definition is "deliberate and unprovoked" - so is only accidental driving permitted?

 

Just to add some context to this... the 1861 Offenses Against the Person Act was written in the time of horse and carts, which probably have  top speed of about 15 MPH. It was a long time before the first motor car - there may have been horseless carriages - I wonder what their stopping distance would have been at 18 mph (if they could even reach that speed).  It was written before the even the first velocipede - but bear in mind, they would have had a fixed wheel (on the front) and no brake.

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jh27 [233 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes
kieren_lon wrote:

Of course a manslaughter charge is justified - someone died as a result of an unplanned action by another person. The circumstances are unfortunate but that is why we have trial by your peers. I would strongly advise to stop and help if you hit anyone. Time after a head injury is crucial. Someone can appear normal but have an internal bleed that might cause a totally avoidable death if medical help is not provided. I'm not sure if this article is intended to be bad satire but it's in poor taste at the moment.

 

Somebody died as a result of their own intentional act of stepping into the road without first looking.  The article is might be in poor taste, but I think it is important to remind cyclists that there is no requirement for them to remain at the scene of an accident and there is no requirement for them to give their details.  However it misses one very important point - 'if you can'.

 

I may be wrong, but I suspect that in the majority of incidents where pedestrians and cyclists collide, it is the cyclist who comes off worse.  The cyclist who suffers the greatest physical injury and the cyclist who suffers the greatest financial loss.

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NicholasM [9 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes

This article advocates profoundly unwise and antisocial behaviour. You really should think about removing it before it gets taken up elsewhere.

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Rich_cb [1009 posts] 2 years ago
6 likes

This article is bullshit.

If you've injured another human being stop and help them.

Ask yourself what you would want people to do if it was your relative lying there injured.

Then do exactly that.

The Daily Mail are currently trawling cycling websites looking for anything to paint cyclists in a negative light.

Well done for making their job a whole lot easier.

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes
jh27 wrote:

I may be wrong, but I suspect that in the majority of incidents where pedestrians and cyclists collide, it is the cyclist who comes off worse.  The cyclist who suffers the greatest physical injury and the cyclist who suffers the greatest financial loss.

Yes you're wrong ... cyclists only come off worse when they (successfully) attempt to avoid a collision ... they come off much better if they let the pedestrian absorb the impact.

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes
oceandweller wrote:

"I’ve seen posts hoping that Alliston gets anally raped if he goes to prison, and wanting to know his usual riding route so they can string wire in his path. Have you ever seen that for a killer driver?"

Ummm, well, yes I have actually. Regularly, right here on road.cc, in the comments after every report of a driver getting a 2-year ban & £100 fine for killing a cyclist with an appalling & egregious example of not giving a damn about anyone else on the road. But hey-ho, you can never have too much hate in the world, eh?

Yeah, but that's the point being made, I think. You pretty much _only_ see it here (and only from over-excitable regulars, and always disagreed with by others). Whereas the comments in this case are much more common in what one would have to call 'the mainstream media'.

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
nbrus wrote:

[

First off, the band are crap as well and not to be defended.

Secondly, you really don't see any inconsistency in that case being blamed on 'the weather' (quick, lock up the weather, put it in the cell next to that 'sun' that keeps getting in drivers' eyes), and are happy to accept the bad tyres played no role, while being so convinced that the lack of a front brake was crucial in this case?
If that driver had not been there, had chosen a different mode of transport, or had not been going at the speed they were, four people would not have died.

I don't see a radical difference between the two cases, certainly not so great as to justify radically different outcomes (granted we have not yet seen the final outcome of this case, so it's possible it won't be out of proportion, despite the disproportionate media comment).

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
nbrus wrote:
jh27 wrote:

I may be wrong, but I suspect that in the majority of incidents where pedestrians and cyclists collide, it is the cyclist who comes off worse.  The cyclist who suffers the greatest physical injury and the cyclist who suffers the greatest financial loss.

Yes you're wrong ... cyclists only come off worse when they (successfully) attempt to avoid a collision ... they come off much better if they let the pedestrian absorb the impact.

Got any data to prove that? It doesn't seem obviously the case.

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4194196/One-crash-day-involving-...

Quote:

UPDATED: 6 February 2017

One crash a day involving cyclists and pedestrians: 50% rise in accidents in the past seven years 

  • Accidents rose from 274 in 2009 to 408 in 2015, a 47 per cent increase 
  • In several collisions, pedestrians were killed and the cyclist was prosecuted
  • Biggest regional spike was London, which rose from 124 in 2009 to 226 in 2015

The number of accidents between cyclists and pedestrians has soared by almost 50 per cent in seven years.

One crash on pavements or roads now takes place every day as the number of cyclists increases. The total number of accidents rose to 408 in 2015, according to official figures, a significant jump from the 274 in 2009.

They involved several collisions in which pedestrians were killed and the cyclists were subsequently prosecuted for reckless behaviour.

Campaigners branded the figures worrying and said more work needs to be done to keep all those on the pavements and roads safe.

The statistics emerged after police in one north London borough said they would no longer pursue cyclists seen riding on the pavement. Instead of receiving a fixed £50 penalty, they will be asked why they are not on the road.

Research by analysts Mapmechanics found over the seven-year period, 3,476 people were injured – 696 seriously. The Department for Transport figures showed accidents between cyclists and pedestrians left 525 casualties, including two deaths, in 2015 – a 47 per cent increase from 2009.

The biggest regional spike was in London, where accidents jumped from 124 in 2009 to 226 in 2015.

Among the most serious crashes was that involving Philip Benwell, who knocked down a schoolgirl and left her for dead after jumping a red light in 2013.

He was jailed for a year after admitting causing grievous bodily harm. He was initially charged with ‘wanton and furious cycling’ under a law enacted in 1861.

Another cyclist, Darryl Gittoes, was also jailed for a year in 2015 after knocking down a 73-year-old woman in Hereford while riding without brakes and a flat rear tyre. The victim died nine days later.

David Cockrell, of Mapmechanics, said many accidents will have taken place at crossings, junctions or on pavements.

‘Trying to prevent accidents and injuries caused by cyclist and pedestrian crashes remains a significant challenge for the authorities,’ he said.

Tompion Platt, of Living Streets, a charity which campaigns for ‘everyday walking’, called for more to be done to protect pedestrians.

‘Mixing people walking and cycling together can cause fear and even serious injury,’ he said.

But Sam Jones, of Cycling UK, said the ‘perception’ of a conflict between cyclists and pedestrians ‘simply does not exist’, pointing out that most serious or fatal accidents involving pedestrians are due to collisions with motor vehicles.

He said: ‘We appreciate the concern but we cannot agree [pavement cycling] is the danger many believe it must be.’

Avatar
zanf [1031 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes
nbrus wrote:
Bentrider wrote:

Alliston was a pillock for riding an unroadworthy bike and for not even knowing the rules about brakes.

He should be treated as harshly as the man who, driving at speed on an icy road with three defective tyres, lost control of his vehicle and collided with a group of cyclists, killing 4 of them.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/1525561/Driver-fined-180-for-defective-t...

Tragic outcome, but fair sentencing...

Quote:

Robert Harris, 47, was fined for having three defective tyres when he lost control on "black ice" and ploughed into 12 members of Rhyl Cycling Club, killing four and injuring the other eight.

Llandudno magistrates were told that the defective tyres did not contribute to the collision, which was believed to have been caused by the weather.

...police investigation found that Mr Harris's defective tyres - the front pair and rear nearside - were not the cause of the crash.

Would that investigation have had the same rigorous scientific procedures as the stopping tests applied in the Alliston case? If so, its work less than fuck all.

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes
nbrus wrote:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4194196/One-crash-day-involving-...

Quote:

UPDATED: 6 February 2017

One crash a day involving cyclists and pedestrians: 50% rise in accidents in the past seven years 

  • Accidents rose from 274 in 2009 to 408 in 2015, a 47 per cent increase 
  • In several collisions, pedestrians were killed and the cyclist was prosecuted
  • Biggest regional spike was London, which rose from 124 in 2009 to 226 in 2015

The number of accidents between cyclists and pedestrians has soared by almost 50 per cent in seven years.

One crash on pavements or roads now takes place every day as the number of cyclists increases. The total number of accidents rose to 408 in 2015, according to official figures, a significant jump from the 274 in 2009.

They involved several collisions in which pedestrians were killed and the cyclists were subsequently prosecuted for reckless behaviour.

Campaigners branded the figures worrying and said more work needs to be done to keep all those on the pavements and roads safe.

The statistics emerged after police in one north London borough said they would no longer pursue cyclists seen riding on the pavement. Instead of receiving a fixed £50 penalty, they will be asked why they are not on the road.

Research by analysts Mapmechanics found over the seven-year period, 3,476 people were injured – 696 seriously. The Department for Transport figures showed accidents between cyclists and pedestrians left 525 casualties, including two deaths, in 2015 – a 47 per cent increase from 2009.

The biggest regional spike was in London, where accidents jumped from 124 in 2009 to 226 in 2015.

Among the most serious crashes was that involving Philip Benwell, who knocked down a schoolgirl and left her for dead after jumping a red light in 2013.

He was jailed for a year after admitting causing grievous bodily harm. He was initially charged with ‘wanton and furious cycling’ under a law enacted in 1861.

Another cyclist, Darryl Gittoes, was also jailed for a year in 2015 after knocking down a 73-year-old woman in Hereford while riding without brakes and a flat rear tyre. The victim died nine days later.

David Cockrell, of Mapmechanics, said many accidents will have taken place at crossings, junctions or on pavements.

‘Trying to prevent accidents and injuries caused by cyclist and pedestrian crashes remains a significant challenge for the authorities,’ he said.

Tompion Platt, of Living Streets, a charity which campaigns for ‘everyday walking’, called for more to be done to protect pedestrians.

‘Mixing people walking and cycling together can cause fear and even serious injury,’ he said.

But Sam Jones, of Cycling UK, said the ‘perception’ of a conflict between cyclists and pedestrians ‘simply does not exist’, pointing out that most serious or fatal accidents involving pedestrians are due to collisions with motor vehicles.

He said: ‘We appreciate the concern but we cannot agree [pavement cycling] is the danger many believe it must be.’

What's that supposed to prove? Is it a scientific study showing who comes off worse of collisions between cyclists and pedestrians? Doesn't appear to be. Certainly I challenge you to show that the division of injuries is anywhere near the same as with collisions between motorists and pedestrians.

Doesn't surprise me that you use the Daily Mail as a source.

Absolutely agree that mixing walking and cycling is a bad idea. Which is why space needs to be taken from drivers.

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

I don't see a radical difference between the two cases, certainly not so great as to justify radically different outcomes (granted we have not yet seen the final outcome of this case, so it's possible it won't be out of proportion, despite the disproportionate media comment).

In that case you have a serious inability to reason logically. Let me help you with that one...

Skidding on 'black ice' cannot be prevented by having tread on your tyres ... that accident was not within the driver's control. Hence he was prosecuted only for having bad tyres.

In Alliston's case, he not only had illegal brakes, but he was going at a speed that was unsafe given the lack of front brake and inability to react safely to anticipated events. Yes, pedestrians do step out, and yes he also anticipated that might happen (his first warning shout), but he was going at a speed that he knew he would be unable to stop safely due to his lack of proper brakes (for which he is responsible). His lack of proper brakes played a key role in the death of Mrs Briggs, whereas bad tyres did not play a role in the previous case, hence there was no one to blame for that accident.

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zanf [1031 posts] 2 years ago
6 likes
charlie_L wrote:
John Stevenson wrote:

He was riding at 18mph. Traffic and parked vehicles around him left him with nowhere to go and when he yelled to warn Kim Briggs she stepped back into his path. If that’s furious and wanton riding, I’m a banana.

Yes John, you are a banana, a rotten smelly banana.

Complete and utter waffle bollocks

"That he caused "bodily harm" is undeniable. The primary cause for that harm was that he did not stop or manage to swerve around Kim Briggs in time."

The evidence presented is that he DID swerve around her but she stepped back into his path.

"The fundamental rule of safe riding or driving is that you go slow enough to be able to avoid hazards or stop."

A bit hard when a pedestrian steps out unexpectedly into your path without looking . To counter that, one would have to ride, and drive, at 5mph or less. To suggest such a thing is more than fucking ridiculous. It also doesn't account that you also have a duty of care for yourself not to just step out into the road without looking.

"Alliston's crime was that he was negligent, careless or wanton. He was going too fast for the conditions - ie. too fast because thousands of pedestrians wander all around the Old street area and too fast because his fixed wheel braking (or cycling skill) was inadequate."

Blah blah blah blah waffle bollocks fucking nonsense.

So his crime was wanton, furious cycling AND riding at a negligent speed?

The CCTV needs to be released (might not be yet if theres going to be an appeal) and I bet it shows that Alliston was travelling at the same speed at vehicular traffic. So if he was travelling too fast for the conditions, then all vehicles along there, with magnitudes more kinetic energy and required stopping distance, are also too fast.

Are you calling for a speed reduction on that, and similar stretches of road?

Thought not because you just talk shit.

"Riding without a front brake is against the law. In the logic of roads policing that justifies a manslaughter charge."

Oh dear....

"To suggest that we should always run away, deny involvement, be the hit and run killers is indefensible. An extension of that logic is that we should not take any care of other road users, irrespective of their vulnerability. Your suggestion leads to careless, wanton driving/riding being the acceptable norm."

You obviously cannot see the difference between a legal argument and a moral one. Please seek out an appropriate adult to help you cut up your food into manageable bitesized pieces.

"The truckloads of journalistic venom aimed a cyclists over the last few weeks is not simply the result of Alliston's actions nor of the police prosecution. It is the result of a deeper malaise in our car dependent society. Your advice to cyclists simply feeds that psychosis.
Yes John, you are a banana, a rotten smelly banana."

Here's some wise words of advice....

 

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
3 likes
nbrus wrote:
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

I don't see a radical difference between the two cases, certainly not so great as to justify radically different outcomes (granted we have not yet seen the final outcome of this case, so it's possible it won't be out of proportion, despite the disproportionate media comment).

In that case you have a serious inability to reason logically. Let me help you with that one...

Skidding on 'black ice' cannot be prevented by having tread on your tyres ... that accident was not within the driver's control. Hence he was prosecuted only for having bad tyres.

In Alliston's case, he not only had illegal brakes, but he was going at a speed that was unsafe given the lack of front brake and inability to react safely to anticipated events. Yes, pedestrians do step out, and yes he also anticipated that might happen (his first warning shout), but he was going at a speed that he knew he would be unable to stop safely due to his lack of proper brakes (for which he is responsible). His lack of proper brakes played a key role in the death of Mrs Briggs, whereas bad tyres did not play a role in the previous case, hence there was no one to blame for that accident.

Fact remains the deaths in the black ice case would not have happened if the driver had been going at a speed suitable for the conditions - including not being there at all, if the road wasn't safe to drive on.

Whether Aliston's lack of front brakes were crucial doesn't appear to have been established beyond doubt, especially given the very weak nature of the police testing.

There is not a _vast_ gap between the two cases.

The bottom line, is that substantial numbers of people die every year due to drivers' decision to drive, when they could have done otherwise. Having a bike with inadequate braking is a choice that imposes danger on others, agreed - but so is choosing to drive a motorised vehicle.

And when are all the drivers who drive vehicles that break emissions limits going to be prosecuted for the harm they cause?

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FluffyKittenofT... [2742 posts] 2 years ago
4 likes
nbrus wrote:
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

Fact remains the deaths would not have happened if the driver had been going at a speed suitable for the conditions - including not being there at all, if the road wasn't safe to drive on. Whether his lack of front brakes were crucial doesn't appear to have been established beyond doubt, especially given the very weak nature of the police testing. There is not a vast gap between the two cases.

Likewise, the cyclists would not have been killed had they not been there ... if the road wasn't safe to drive on, then it most certainly wasn't safe to cycle on.

Nope, doesn't work as an arugment - It wasn't the cycling that bought the danger. The killer momentum came with the car.

Or would you argue that Mrs Briggs wouldn't have been killed had she not been there?

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

Fact remains the deaths would not have happened if the driver had been going at a speed suitable for the conditions - including not being there at all, if the road wasn't safe to drive on. Whether his lack of front brakes were crucial doesn't appear to have been established beyond doubt, especially given the very weak nature of the police testing. There is not a vast gap between the two cases.

Likewise, the cyclists would not have been killed had they not been there ... if the road wasn't safe to drive on, then it most certainly wasn't safe to cycle on.

The roads were probably fine in most places, but black ice is very difficult to spot and can take you by complete surprise.

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davel [2723 posts] 2 years ago
2 likes
Rich_cb wrote:

This article is bullshit. If you've injured another human being stop and help them. Ask yourself what you would want people to do if it was your relative lying there injured. Then do exactly that. The Daily Mail are currently trawling cycling websites looking for anything to paint cyclists in a negative light. Well done for making their job a whole lot easier.

What's the alternative: cyclists write reasonable articles pointing out discrepancies? Been done for years - how is it panning out? It isn't making the Mail alter their course of cyclistbashing; it isn't making the CPS charge drivers appropriately.

Ped steps out in front of car; driver swerves to avoid them; ped readjusts into car's path; car hits them around 10mph. That's a set of circumstances that would see a driver hailed as trying to avoid the collision.

Accepting the status quo isn't working. Something drastic is needed... Not sure what, and I'm not sure eschewing decency (as some are interpreting the artice as) is the way to go, but some sort of diversion away from just shrugging and trying not to get killed is badly needed.

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alansmurphy [2290 posts] 2 years ago
5 likes
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:
nbrus wrote:
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

I don't see a radical difference between the two cases, certainly not so great as to justify radically different outcomes (granted we have not yet seen the final outcome of this case, so it's possible it won't be out of proportion, despite the disproportionate media comment).

In that case you have a serious inability to reason logically. Let me help you with that one...

Skidding on 'black ice' cannot be prevented by having tread on your tyres ... that accident was not within the driver's control. Hence he was prosecuted only for having bad tyres.

In Alliston's case, he not only had illegal brakes, but he was going at a speed that was unsafe given the lack of front brake and inability to react safely to anticipated events. Yes, pedestrians do step out, and yes he also anticipated that might happen (his first warning shout), but he was going at a speed that he knew he would be unable to stop safely due to his lack of proper brakes (for which he is responsible). His lack of proper brakes played a key role in the death of Mrs Briggs, whereas bad tyres did not play a role in the previous case, hence there was no one to blame for that accident.

Fact remains the deaths would not have happened if the driver had been going at a speed suitable for the conditions - including not being there at all, if the road wasn't safe to drive on. Whether his lack of front brakes were crucial doesn't appear to have been established beyond doubt, especially given the very weak nature of the police testing. There is not a vast gap between the two cases. The bottom line, is that substantial numbers of people die every year due to drivers' decision to drive, when they could have done otherwise. Having a bike with inadequate braking is a choice that imposes danger on others, agreed - but so is choosing to drive a motorised vehicle. And when are all the drivers who drive vehicles that break emissions limits going to be prosecuted for the harm they cause?

 

This is the idiot that has been here under 3 different usernames now isn't it - defending drivers and claiming to ride a bike within mm of the kerb because he is a wonderful human?

 

The ban hammer can't be far away but he serves as a demonstration of all that is wrong with our laws, moral standpoints and the application of it. Very simple logic that he seemingly fails to understand:

 

Bike without correct braking backup travelling under the speed limit collides with inattentive pedestrian stepping into the road and freak fall results in death = manslaughter charge (police present misleading evidence to attempt to secure conviction)

 

Car with a minimum of 3 issues not making it roadworthy, travels at a speed unsuitable for the conditions, kills 3 people as tons of metal travelling at excessive speed kills = £180 fine (evidence presented to defend motorist that cannot be proved to be correct)

 

And he thinks there's no issue here?

 

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nbrus [585 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes
FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

Nope, doesn't work as an arugment - It wasn't the cycling that bought the danger. The killer momentum came with the car. Or would you argue that Mrs Briggs wouldn't have been killed had she not been there?

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