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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.

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres 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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alansmurphy [2195 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes
davel wrote:
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.

 

Furthermore - in most discussions here you will have seen most people agree that Alliston was wrong and should be facing a form of punishment. Many people are saying they don't agree with this article from a moral standpoint and are unlikely to do as suggested.

 

To have reasoned debate about incident, laws, moral, the application of them shouldn't really be too scary even for the Daily Heil; reading below the line on their site (where cyclist should be hung, drawn and quartered) is where the problem lies...

 

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
alansmurphy wrote:

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?

Nope, wrong ... I do think there is an issue, but the issues regard a prat taking to the road in an unroadworthy vehicle was not what resulted in the accident. He was presecuted for the offences he was responsible for. Are you saying that he should have been done for manslaughter even if he'd been driving a well maintained and road legal vehicle? Should you be done for multiple manslaughter for causing a bus to swerve (and crash) to avoid hitting you? In which case maybe they should avoid swerving and simply mow you down.

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alansmurphy [2195 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

You tell me how they were able to replicate the exact same conditions to come up with the answer he couldn't have stopped. Just one tyre may have been off the ice (half a tyre even), or the ice may have been thinner at one point, churned up to slush. It certainly wouldn't have been the same after he went over it as before let alone at whatever point they tried to investigate.

 

Him setting out in an unroadworthy car absolutely had a bearing on him killing people.

 

 

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
alansmurphy wrote:

You tell me how they were able to replicate the exact same conditions to come up with the answer he couldn't have stopped. Just one tyre may have been off the ice (half a tyre even), or the ice may have been thinner at one point, churned up to slush. It certainly wouldn't have been the same after he went over it as before let alone at whatever point they tried to investigate.

Him setting out in an unroadworthy car absolutely had a bearing on him killing people.

Ok, I think I see your problem ... you don't trust the Police ... you believe they deliberately make up evidence and reinterpret witness statements and do everything possible to side with motorists against cyclists. The legal system is completely rigged against cyclists and you are very angry about that. I absolutely get it. Now we just need to prove it.

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alansmurphy [2195 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

I think we already have.

 

Have you seen the stopping distance video used in the Alliston case?

 

How can you prove 5 minutes after a car has passed over ice how a car with different tyres would act?

 

Then we just need to look at the discourse that surrounds the several hundred car drivers killing a pedestrian each year and the charges presented compared to the rare incidents involving a cyclist.

 

If the WiFi under your bridge allows access to other sources, give it a go. As a cyclist yourself, do these things not concern you?

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oldstrath [981 posts] 1 year ago
4 likes
nbrus wrote:
alansmurphy wrote:

You tell me how they were able to replicate the exact same conditions to come up with the answer he couldn't have stopped. Just one tyre may have been off the ice (half a tyre even), or the ice may have been thinner at one point, churned up to slush. It certainly wouldn't have been the same after he went over it as before let alone at whatever point they tried to investigate.

Him setting out in an unroadworthy car absolutely had a bearing on him killing people.

Ok, I think I see your problem ... you don't trust the Police ... you believe they deliberately make up evidence and reinterpret witness statements and do everything possible to side with motorists against cyclists. The legal system is completely rigged against cyclists and you are very angry about that. I absolutely get it. Now we just need to prove it.

Rigged against cyclistsd probably not. Rigged in favour of motorists becausethey are the majority group, yes, probably. Maybe not even intentionally.

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beezus fufoon [972 posts] 1 year ago
3 likes
nbrus wrote:
alansmurphy wrote:

You tell me how they were able to replicate the exact same conditions to come up with the answer he couldn't have stopped. Just one tyre may have been off the ice (half a tyre even), or the ice may have been thinner at one point, churned up to slush. It certainly wouldn't have been the same after he went over it as before let alone at whatever point they tried to investigate.

Him setting out in an unroadworthy car absolutely had a bearing on him killing people.

Ok, I think I see your problem ... you don't trust the Police ... you believe they deliberately make up evidence and reinterpret witness statements and do everything possible to side with motorists against cyclists. The legal system is completely rigged against cyclists and you are very angry about that. I absolutely get it. Now we just need to prove it.

Almost - the police clearly decide who they think is to blame and then try to make the evidence fit, and they are just as suceptible to prejudiced thinking as the rest of us with no direct experience of a situation - that is why the media frenzy surrounding this case is inappropriately disproportionate.

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
alansmurphy wrote:

I think we already have.

Have you seen the stopping distance video used in the Alliston case?

How can you prove 5 minutes after a car has passed over ice how a car with different tyres would act?

Then we just need to look at the discourse that surrounds the several hundred car drivers killing a pedestrian each year and the charges presented compared to the rare incidents involving a cyclist.

If the WiFi under your bridge allows access to other sources, give it a go. As a cyclist yourself, do these things not concern you?

Yes, I would be very concerned if I believed some great injustice was taking place. And I'll be here pointing it out. I've still to see it.

I have seen the stopping distance video on the Alliston case ... I'm not sure how useful it is seeing as Alliston didn't manage to stop within 6.53 m whereas a bike with normal brakes managed to stop within 3 m in the wet and without lifting the rear wheel. Kind of proves the point.

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
beezus fufoon wrote:

Almost - the police clearly decide who they think is to blame and then try to make the evidence fit, and they are just as suceptible to prejudiced thinking as the rest of us with no direct experience of a situation - that is why the media frenzy surrounding this case is inappropriately disproportionate.

Agree, I think that is exactly what happens ... Police are not there to prove innocence, they are there to bring prosecutions in respect of the victim (I could be wrong). This is normal.

If a case gets to court, then the judge/jury do not pick sides ... they start with a blank slate and look at both sides of the argument.

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davel [2722 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
nbrus wrote:

I have seen the stopping distance video on the Alliston case ... I'm not sure how useful it is seeing as Alliston didn't manage to stop within 6.53 m whereas a bike with normal brakes managed to stop within 3 m in the wet and without lifting the rear wheel. Kind of proves the point.

Are you saying that that video represents a reasonable test of how Alliston's bike would have behaved in the collision, had it had a front brake?

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Avicenna [1 post] 1 year ago
4 likes
nbrus wrote:

I have seen the stopping distance video on the Alliston case ... I'm not sure how useful it is seeing as Alliston didn't manage to stop within 6.53 m whereas a bike with normal brakes managed to stop within 3 m in the wet and without lifting the rear wheel. Kind of proves the point.

Is this the video where a police cyclist can clearly see the upcoming cone and plan to brake as he goes past it? Where they probably had several practice takes and chose the one where he timed his braking best? This is in no way representative of real life.

Reaction time for an unexpected hazard (pedestrian stepping out between parked vehicles) is far longer than for an anticipated hazards (pedestrian stepping out on zebra crossing). And he was travelling at 18mph = 8 metres/ second.

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
davel wrote:
nbrus wrote:

I have seen the stopping distance video on the Alliston case ... I'm not sure how useful it is seeing as Alliston didn't manage to stop within 6.53 m whereas a bike with normal brakes managed to stop within 3 m in the wet and without lifting the rear wheel. Kind of proves the point.

Are you saying that that video represents a reasonable test of how Alliston's bike would have behaved in the collision, had it had a front brake?

Seems reasonable ... even with considerable margin for error (6.53 - 3 = 3.53 m). They did the test in the wet and they didn't use disc brakes. Granted it isn't perfect, but they did suggest even a butchers bike could have stopped in time ... who rides a butchers bike? It would be nice to see some stopping distances for the actual bike. Why would a fixie without a front brake be classed as non road legal without a front brake if the stopping distances weren't impacted? Have they been improperly categorised? Should they be road legal? Unless someone does more tests, then the Police tests are all we have.

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Jimmy Ray Will [1022 posts] 1 year ago
5 likes
nbrus wrote:
alansmurphy wrote:

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?

Nope, wrong ... I do think there is an issue, but the issues regard a prat taking to the road in an unroadworthy vehicle was not what resulted in the accident. He was presecuted for the offences he was responsible for. Are you saying that he should have been done for manslaughter even if he'd been driving a well maintained and road legal vehicle? Should you be done for multiple manslaughter for causing a bus to swerve (and crash) to avoid hitting you? In which case maybe they should avoid swerving and simply mow you down.

You see, this has always bothered me about this particular case. 

The defective tyres were not seen as contributory due to the black ice... I contest this to a degree... yes tyre tread clears water and avoids aquaplaining which was totally irrelvant in this case. However, tyre tread also causes movement of the tread, which generates heat, which leads to grip. defective tyres will not have been working to the parameters designed by the manufacturers so their performance would have been compromised. 

It is/was far too simple an observation to say that tread was irrelevant in this case.

And to further work this point... if the conditions were so bad, and the accident so unreasonably avoidable why was the accident isolated to one car... one that happened to have defective tyres. 

If a corner was made undrivable due to black ice, there would have been a collection of crashed cars on the exit of that corner. There was not... other vehicles had managed to pass that corner without incident. 

Therefore in my opinion either the way that car was driven, or something fundamentally different about the cars handling caused that car to lose control when it did. 

So... there are similarities here between the two cases. However, they are not the same. 

 

 

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Jimmy Ray Will wrote:

You see, this has always bothered me about this particular case. 

The defective tyres were not seen as contributory due to the black ice... I contest this to a degree... yes tyre tread clears water and avoids aquaplaining which was totally irrelvant in this case. However, tyre tread also causes movement of the tread, which generates heat, which leads to grip. defective tyres will not have been working to the parameters designed by the manufacturers so their performance would have been compromised. 

It is/was far too simple an observation to say that tread was irrelevant in this case.

And to further work this point... if the conditions were so bad, and the accident so unreasonably avoidable why was the accident isolated to one car... one that happened to have defective tyres. 

If a corner was made undrivable due to black ice, there would have been a collection of crashed cars on the exit of that corner. There was not... other vehicles had managed to pass that corner without incident. 

Therefore in my opinion either the way that car was driven, or something fundamentally different about the cars handling caused that car to lose control when it did. 

So... there are similarities here between the two cases. However, they are not the same. 

You make some good points, though we are not in a position to make judgments about the evidence here as we don't have access to the full details of the case. What we can say is that if we accept that black ice was the cause of the accident, then the judgment was fair.

When in doubt, the law always errs on the side of not guilty so as to avoid any miscarraige of justice.

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Avicenna wrote:

Is this the video where a police cyclist can clearly see the upcoming cone and plan to brake as he goes past it? Where they probably had several practice takes and chose the one where he timed his braking best? This is in no way representative of real life.

Reaction time for an unexpected hazard (pedestrian stepping out between parked vehicles) is far longer than for an anticipated hazards (pedestrian stepping out on zebra crossing). And he was travelling at 18mph = 8 metres/ second.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't Alliston aware of the potential hazard before it became a hazard? He shouted his first warning before Mrs Briggs stepped out and before he took avoiding action. He could have chosen to slow down first just in case she stepped out, but he kept on going instead. He was already aware there was a potential problem ahead.

(I'll retract that as I can't find where I got that from ... but two shouts in 1 second is a lot ... I can't do it).

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Duncann [1491 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Setting aside the moral objectionability of the suggestion you should hit-and-run... in a busy urban at least the chances of making a clean escape, whether at the time or subsequently, may be fairly slim.

If there aren't useful witnesses to the collision (some of whom might intervene - I think I might) then I'd thought you are quite likely to be traceable via CCTV before the incident. Perhaps all the way to your point of origin (workplace/home).

And if you're caught having done that then no-one will care if they stepped out in front of you or you couldn't reasonably avoid them.

Charlie Allison was probably found guilty as much for what he did either side of the collision as for the tragic incident itself. You shouldn't go to jail just for being a twat - but he probably will.

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wildnorthlands [34 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

It would be terrible if CS3, the segregated route along the Embankment was ripped out. Maybe we should start a petition about this now. 

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BehindTheBikesheds [3166 posts] 1 year ago
2 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 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.

Clearly you don't understand what wanton and furious mean, you also don't understand or just patently ignore the FACT (admitted by the prosecution) that he ackowleged the presence of the pedestrian, gave her not one but two audible warnings, he slowed his vehicle to the again admitted circa 10mph (a veritable crawl on a bike) and the pedestrian walked back INTO him. She moved into him, he did not move into her original position/predictable/normal direction (i.e. crossing the road from left to right from the view of Alliston), these are undeniable facts.

the missing front brake as told time and again on here is irrelevant because he, even at a slow 10mph would not have had enough thinking time to even pull a brake never mind come to a stop as so brazingly misrepresented by the police due to her unexplained/unexpected change of direction back into his path when he was only a few metres away. Crash investigators note 1.5seconds plus mechanical action time (circa 0.4s) for a singular event for someone alert. That he had already reacted and braked initially is a seperate thinking process to the later reaction of the pedestrian walking back into his path.  The police/CPS and prosecution are not going to make that distinction because they have a clear agenda and the piss poor defence didn't even bother either because they were just not equipped to defend such or they also thought he was a killer lycra lout so weren't really bothered to investigate what actually happens in collisions.

So, not wanton, not furious, not even remotely manslaughter, but a breach of the Construction and use refulations 1984.

HTH

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Rich_cb [917 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
davel wrote:

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.

Could things be better than they currently are?

Yes, they could be a lot better.

Could things be worse?

Yes, they could be a whole lot worse.

There are a huge number of voters who would love to see cyclists banned from the roads altogether.

Posting inflammatory bullshit like the article above is far more likely to make things worse than better.

You may not think much progress has been made but the relative risk of cycling has plummeted in recent decades.

There is still a long way to go but there is light at the end of the tunnel, driverless technology and driver assistance technology should lead to a huge fall in collisions, injuries and fatalities.

Within that context the political will to prosecute negligent driving should improve.

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beezus fufoon [972 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
Rich_cb wrote:

...inflammatory bullshit...

I for one think it's a good idea to know where you stand as regards the law - if you don't like it then maybe write to your MP or start a petition.

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Rich_cb [917 posts] 1 year ago
3 likes
beezus fufoon wrote:

I for one think it's a good idea to know where you stand as regards the law - if you don't like it then maybe write to your MP or start a petition.

If you're happy for a relative of yours to be left to die at the side of the road then that's fine.

I personally think anyone encouraging that sort of behaviour is a complete arsehole.

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ConcordeCX [1088 posts] 1 year ago
3 likes
nbrus wrote:

[...] Why would ae fixie without a front brake be classed as non road legal without a front brake if the stopping distances weren't impacted? Have they been improperly categorised? Should they be road legal? Unless someone does more tests, then the Police tests are all we have.

the reason why you have to have two independent braking systems is to provide back-up when one of them fails. Failure of the only braking system would be catastrophic.

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davel [2722 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
Rich_cb wrote:
beezus fufoon wrote:

I for one think it's a good idea to know where you stand as regards the law - if you don't like it then maybe write to your MP or start a petition.

If you're happy for a relative of yours to be left to die at the side of the road then that's fine. I personally think anyone encouraging that sort of behaviour is a complete arsehole.

It's an article, illustrating a point. This is how shit and one-sided the justice system is.

ps: I disagree with your "Posting inflammatory bullshit like the article above is far more likely to make things worse than better". Even if that point is correct, we're losing badly enough already. It's a hopeless mismatch. We're England, heading out in the quarters 3-0 to Germany. Let's just carry on the way we are and try not to lose 10-0, eh? Not for me.

I don't share your optimisim about driverless cars either - I hope they're the future but they'll take ages to get here.

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Rich_cb [917 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
davel wrote:

It's an article, illustrating a point. This is how shit and one-sided the justice system is.

ps: I disagree with your "Posting inflammatory bullshit like the article above is far more likely to make things worse than better". Even if that point is correct, we're losing badly enough already. It's a hopeless mismatch. We're England, heading out in the quarters 3-0 to Germany. Let's just carry on the way we are and try not to lose 10-0, eh? Not for me.

I don't share your optimisim about driverless cars either - I hope they're the future but they'll take ages to get here.

Just take a look at Australian cycling laws, could that happen in the UK?

Definitely.

All it takes is for the populist press to start campaigning. Articles like this would be gold dust to an anti cycling campaign.

In fact I'd be surprised if the Daily Mail don't actually pick up on it.

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
ConcordeCX wrote:
nbrus wrote:

[...] Why would ae fixie without a front brake be classed as non road legal without a front brake if the stopping distances weren't impacted? Have they been improperly categorised? Should they be road legal? Unless someone does more tests, then the Police tests are all we have.

the reason why you have to have two independent braking systems is to provide back-up when one of them fails. Failure of the only braking system would be catastrophic.

Thanks ... I should have googled that.

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beezus fufoon [972 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
Rich_cb wrote:
beezus fufoon wrote:

I for one think it's a good idea to know where you stand as regards the law - if you don't like it then maybe write to your MP or start a petition.

If you're happy for a relative of yours to be left to die at the side of the road then that's fine. I personally think anyone encouraging that sort of behaviour is a complete arsehole.

bit presumptuous - I have no relatives!

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nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes
BehindTheBikesheds wrote:

Clearly you don't understand what wanton and furious mean, you also don't understand or just patently ignore the FACT (admitted by the prosecution) that he ackowleged the presence of the pedestrian, gave her not one but two audible warnings, he slowed his vehicle to the again admitted circa 10mph (a veritable crawl on a bike) and the pedestrian walked back INTO him. She moved into him, he did not move into her original position/predictable/normal direction (i.e. crossing the road from left to right from the view of Alliston), these are undeniable facts.

the missing front brake as told time and again on here is irrelevant because he, even at a slow 10mph would not have had enough thinking time to even pull a brake never mind come to a stop as so brazingly misrepresented by the police due to her unexplained/unexpected change of direction back into his path when he was only a few metres away. Crash investigators note 1.5seconds plus mechanical action time (circa 0.4s) for a singular event for someone alert. That he had already reacted and braked initially is a seperate thinking process to the later reaction of the pedestrian walking back into his path.  The police/CPS and prosecution are not going to make that distinction because they have a clear agenda and the piss poor defence didn't even bother either because they were just not equipped to defend such or they also thought he was a killer lycra lout so weren't really bothered to investigate what actually happens in collisions.

So, not wanton, not furious, not even remotely manslaughter, but a breach of the Construction and use refulations 1984.

HTH

If someone shouts a warning at someone that steps forwards into the road, then their natural reaction would be to step backwards in response to that warning. Alliston appears to have expected his warning to be ignored and so he decided to move behind Mrs Briggs instead.

Alliston did have enough time to pull a brake ... if he had enough time to slow from 18 mph to 10 mph using his legs, then he certainly had the same amount of time to pull a brake.

 

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davel [2722 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes
Rich_cb wrote:
davel wrote:

It's an article, illustrating a point. This is how shit and one-sided the justice system is.

ps: I disagree with your "Posting inflammatory bullshit like the article above is far more likely to make things worse than better". Even if that point is correct, we're losing badly enough already. It's a hopeless mismatch. We're England, heading out in the quarters 3-0 to Germany. Let's just carry on the way we are and try not to lose 10-0, eh? Not for me.

I don't share your optimisim about driverless cars either - I hope they're the future but they'll take ages to get here.

Just take a look at Australian cycling laws, could that happen in the UK? Definitely. All it takes is for the populist press to start campaigning. Articles like this would be gold dust to an anti cycling campaign. In fact I'd be surprised if the Daily Mail don't actually pick up on it.

I'm trying hard to imagine 'campaigning' that doesn't resemble where we are already. We are there, in my view, and a liability law isn't going to drop out of the sky, not with us on this trajectory.

But we are not, and won't become, Australia (for the same reason I can't envisage one of our MPs wearing a protest burkha in parliament).

 

Avatar
nbrus [585 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
davel wrote:
Rich_cb wrote:
davel wrote:

It's an article, illustrating a point. This is how shit and one-sided the justice system is.

ps: I disagree with your "Posting inflammatory bullshit like the article above is far more likely to make things worse than better". Even if that point is correct, we're losing badly enough already. It's a hopeless mismatch. We're England, heading out in the quarters 3-0 to Germany. Let's just carry on the way we are and try not to lose 10-0, eh? Not for me.

I don't share your optimisim about driverless cars either - I hope they're the future but they'll take ages to get here.

Just take a look at Australian cycling laws, could that happen in the UK? Definitely. All it takes is for the populist press to start campaigning. Articles like this would be gold dust to an anti cycling campaign. In fact I'd be surprised if the Daily Mail don't actually pick up on it.

I'm trying hard to imagine 'campaigning' that doesn't resemble where we are already. We are there, in my view, and a liability law isn't going to drop out of the sky, not with us on this trajectory.

But we are not, and won't become, Australia (for the same reason I can't envisage one of our MPs wearing a protest burkha in parliament).

 

At least we don't have to have insurance, numberplates and a license.

Avatar
FluffyKittenofT... [2558 posts] 1 year ago
3 likes
Rich_cb wrote:
davel wrote:

It's an article, illustrating a point. This is how shit and one-sided the justice system is.

ps: I disagree with your "Posting inflammatory bullshit like the article above is far more likely to make things worse than better". Even if that point is correct, we're losing badly enough already. It's a hopeless mismatch. We're England, heading out in the quarters 3-0 to Germany. Let's just carry on the way we are and try not to lose 10-0, eh? Not for me.

I don't share your optimisim about driverless cars either - I hope they're the future but they'll take ages to get here.

Just take a look at Australian cycling laws, could that happen in the UK?

Definitely.

All it takes is for the populist press to start campaigning. Articles like this would be gold dust to an anti cycling campaign.

In fact I'd be surprised if the Daily Mail don't actually pick up on it.

On balance, I don't think the article was a good idea. It sounds as if it comes straight from a place of anger, and for 'editorial' (as opposed to BTL venting) I'd far rather see measured restrained, post-sleeping-on-it, comments.

But I really have to roll my eyes at the reasoning that says 'constantly tip-toe around the topic because one bad article might upset them and make all the difference when otherwise we are sure to win'. The anti-cycling campaign doesn't need any real material, they can just make it up in endless quantities. Giving them 'gold dust' is going to make negligible difference when they have tonnes of fake stuff that do just as well.

I mean how well did the "when they go low, we go high" approach work out for the Democrats against Trump?

Conservatism in general is a force of immense power, composed of pure stupidity. Nothing can stand in the way of stupid people in sufficient numbers.

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