Sussex Police are using CCTV footage showing a 12-year-old cyclist being hit by a car as she waits at a junction as part of a new road safety campaign urging drivers to watch out for people on bikes and cyclists to take care around pedestrians.
The footage was taken in 2012 on the A259 in Chichester at the junction with Bognor Road. Luckily, the girl on the bike escaped with nothing more than bumps and bruises.
The motorist, a 41-year-old man, was convicted of driving without due care and attention and was given three points on his licence and ordered to pay £85 costs, an £85 fine and a £20 victim surcharge.
Sergeant Carl Knapp of Sussex Police said: "Fortunately in this case the cyclist escaped with bumps and bruises but it could have been a lot worse.
"Despite being just a few yards away, the car driver completely failed to look for the cyclist.
"It shows how dangerous any one of us can be if we fail to spot and take on board all of the other road users near us.
"This footage shows a car driver to blame but there have equally been incidents where cyclists have been knocked down after pulling in front of vehicles without looking.
"My message to all road users is look once, look twice and then look a third time if you have to - whatever you need to do to make sure you keep yourself and other people safe.
"70% of collisions where cyclists suffer serious harm or are killed happen at junctions.
"I would urge all road users to reflect on this and to take that opportunity to double check their view at junctions before passing through.
"Whether you have right of way or not, by getting a good understanding of the other road users and their position and speed, you are better placed to anticipate and take avoiding action where necessary."
Sussex Police say that four cyclists were killed in East and West Sussex last year, with 145 seriously injured.
The police force has also issued safety advice for both drivers and cyclists:
Safety tips for drivers:
- Look out for cyclists, especially when turning - make eye contact if possible so they know you've seen them
- Use your indicators and signal your intentions so that cyclists can react
- Give cyclists plenty of space when overtaking them, leaving as much room as you would give a car. If there isn't sufficient space to pass, hold back. Remember that cyclists may need to manoeuvre suddenly if the road is poor, it's windy or if a car door is opened
- Always check for cyclists when you open your car door
- Advanced stop lines allow cyclists to get to the front and increase their visibility. You must stop at the first white line reached if the lights are amber or red and allow cyclists time and space to move off when the green signal shows.
Safety tips for cyclists:
- Ride positively, decisively and well clear of the kerb - look and signal to show drivers what you plan to do and make eye contact where possible so you know drivers have seen you
- Avoid riding up the inside of large vehicles, like lorries or buses, where you might not be seen
- Always use lights after dark or when visibility is poor
- Wearing light coloured or reflective clothing during the day and reflective clothing and/or accessories in the dark increases your visibility
- Wear a correctly fitted cycle helmet that is securely fastened and conforms to current regulations.
Simon has been news editor at road.cc since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.