Being hit by a lorry or other large vehicle while you’re riding often results in serious injury or even death, which makes this dashcam clip of a 17-year-old Russian girl surviving a nightmare hit from a lorry as remarkable as it is stomach-churning.
According to the Express, Artem Droukov, 24, was driving behind the skip lorry when it ran over 17-year-old Natasha Balova in the Russian city of Zelenograd near Moscow.
Dourkov said: “I was driving behind the skip lorry when I saw this teenager get knocked off her bike and then run over.
“I thought she would be crushed flat but instead the truck bounced into the air and after lying on the ground for a short while screaming, she got up and really gave the driver a mouthful.
“I couldn’t believe it. She walked a bit unsteadily out of the side of the road and sat down and told him what she thought of him.”
Balova was taken to hospital — after making it very clear to the driver what she thought of his astonishingly dangerous driving — and found to have escaped with just bruises.
Her bike, however, was completely wrecked in the collision.
Police say they are considering charges against the driver.
In the UK, heavy vehicles are disproportionately represented in crashes resulting in deaths and serious injury of cyclists. In London they make up just 5 percent of traffic, but are involved in 50 percent of cyclist fatalities.
HGVs have also been cited as being disproportionately involved in crashes with female cyclists. On the whole, men are the victims of most cycling fatalities and sustain more serious injuries than women.
According to an NHS Choices report on cycling safety published in February this year, males are 1.4 times more likely to be killed and 1.7 times more likely to be seriously injured than females.
However, the report said there is evidence that women in the UK have a greater risk of being involved in a collision with an HGV than men.
It said: “The latest study into London's cycle hire scheme found that women were twice as likely to be involved in a fatal collision with an HGV, despite making up just 30% of the scheme’s participants.
“One theory is that, somewhat counterintuitively, this increased danger is actually due to women being less willing to take risks.
“A leaked TfL internal report suggests that women are less likely to jump red lights, meaning they are more likely to get caught in an HGV’s blind spot.
“One UK researcher has argued that many women wrongly perceive that overtaking an HGV on the left-hand side is less risky, possibly because they believe sticking close to the curb is safer. The researcher did find a statistically significant trend in women reporting to be “left-side overtakers”.”
However, it seems clear in this case that Natasha Balova was simply riding down the road and the truck driver didn’t avoid her or slow down enough to miss her.
John 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 founder Tony Farrelly, 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. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.