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"Reckless" passenger hits cyclist by opening car door as driver overtakes

"It could easily have ended with serious injury or fatality"...

A Yorkshire cyclist has warned he could have been killed when a passenger in an overtaking car opened one of the vehicle's rear doors, hitting him on the hand.

Fortunately, Trev Walker escaped relatively physically unscathed, suffering swelling and bruising to his right hand, but said it "could easily have ended with serious injury or fatality" after a passenger sat in the rear of a passing car opened the door into him as the vehicle's driver overtook on the B6248 near Wakefield on September 2.

Reckless moment passenger hits cyclist by opening car door as driver overtakes (screenshot YorkshireLive video/Trev Walker)
Reckless moment passenger hits cyclist by opening car door as driver overtakes (screenshot YorkshireLive video/Trev Walker)

Mr Walker has reported the incident to West Yorkshire Police having caught it on a rear-facing camera. The cyclist, who works as a medic for Yorkshire Ambulance Service, went to hospital for an X-ray which revealed no broken bones, although more than two weeks later his hand is still swollen and painful.

"Had it hit the bike it could have ended very badly," he told YorkshireLive (who published the video footage in their original story, available here, of the incident on Newstead Lane, between Fitzwilliam and Havercroft). "My hand was swollen, bruised with a minor graze. My hand is still swollen and painful 17 days later.

"I don't think they thought it through as it could easily have ended with serious injury or fatality."

Reckless moment passenger hits cyclist by opening car door as driver overtakes (screenshot YorkshireLive video/Trev Walker)

The car had a cracked windscreen, a missing wing mirror, and a dented bumper, and although parts of the number plate are just about readable in still shots from the footage, the cyclist has been warned the car may have been cloned with a different registration plate.

Dooring — a collision when the passenger or driver of a vehicle opens a door into the path of a cyclist — more commonly occurs when a vehicle is stationary and the occupants exit without checking for oncoming traffic. In this case it is not clear, as the vehicle was moving at high speed, why the passenger opened the door, and if it was done deliberately to hit the cyclist.

To combat the more conventional danger of dooring, January's Highway Code changes suggest drivers use the Dutch Reach technique — opening a car door with your hand on the opposite side to the door you are opening — to better see blind spots.

Dan is the road.cc news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined road.cc in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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39 comments

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PRSboy | 1 year ago
18 likes

Like that nice Mr Freeman said, its lucky that cars have number plates so the drivers can be quickly and reliably identified.  Wait...  what?

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NPlus1Bikelights replied to PRSboy | 1 year ago
11 likes

Your spell checker appears to have put nice when you typed nincompoop.

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Fignon's ghost | 1 year ago
2 likes

If this event had ended in a murder charge. Would the police have triangulated the car's phone pings to narrow down the murder suspects?
Is that a job GCHQ can help with or would the rozzas have own access???

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Rendel Harris replied to Fignon's ghost | 1 year ago
4 likes

Fignon's ghost wrote:

If this event had ended in a murder charge. Would the police have triangulated the car's phone pings to narrow down the murder suspects? Is that a job GCHQ can help with or would the rozzas have own access???

I am pretty certain the technology doesn't exist to do that. If they have a suspect and their number/device ID they could maybe use mobile data from nearby masts to prove that the suspects were in the location at the time of the offence (supposing that they actually had their phones turned on and connected at the time) but I don't think they can just say there was a crime committed here, find the phone that was at the scene. Also, even if it could be done, it's a pretty high bar to get court permission to access such records, it's usually only granted in the case of terrorism offences, sex trafficking rings and the like, unlikely to be given in the investigation of a road traffic offence.

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Fignon's ghost replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago
10 likes

The degenerate responsible for this action is likely to do it again and this was probably not the first occasion. Given the malicious intent to harm a vulnerable road user. It's only a matter of time before the idiot causes a death.

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Rendel Harris replied to Fignon's ghost | 1 year ago
0 likes

Fignon's ghost wrote:

The degenerate responsible for this action is likely to do it again and this was probably not the first occasion. Given the malicious intent to harm a vulnerable road user. It's only a matter of time before the idiot causes a death.

Quite probably and I'd be delighted if he was caught and the book thrown at him, I just don't think that even if it had been a murder the technology currently exists to show that an unknown number mobile device was at the scene and then track it elsewhere. If they catch him and get his number, they could certainly then show his device was present and use that as evidence against him if he denied being at the scene.

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Awavey replied to Rendel Harris | 1 year ago
4 likes

android phone users will be familiar with Google's monthly email about all the exciting places weve been to and how we got there...and there is Googles live traffic maps.

in fact alot of the government's traffic data published during Covid lockdowns about peoples movements came from such anonymised mobile phone location data.So the data & tech is certainly there, a mobile phone is always (when switched on) reporting signal strength to the cell station(s) it's in contact with, so you can work out where it is, it's not going to be trivial to locate an "anonymous" phone due to the amount of data youd have to trawl, but it is possible, and has been used in murder enquiries, missing persons cases.

The police simply, with suitable legal justification of course, have to request the telco provides the data and analysis.

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HoarseMann replied to Awavey | 1 year ago
2 likes

Awavey wrote:

it's not going to be trivial to locate an "anonymous" phone due to the amount of data youd have to trawl

One option would be to correlate ANPR hits on the number plate with phones that were in the area at the time. It's a lot of data to harvest, but it's possible.

If you're lucky, and you've got a couple of ANPR hits at geographically distant sites, then just two data sets might be enough.

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Fignon's ghost replied to HoarseMann | 1 year ago
1 like

Now that sounds like a plan. And with the right program. The correlating data can quickly come together and make a Judge smile.

This cretin needs to be caught.

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IanGlasgow | 1 year ago
9 likes

"parts of the number plate are just about readable in still shots.."

It's WX16RXB. Untaxed since Aug 26th

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HLaB replied to IanGlasgow | 1 year ago
5 likes

The police are saying it's a dodgy cloned plate!

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NPlus1Bikelights replied to HLaB | 1 year ago
2 likes

If the original is untaxed anything with that numberplate ANPR pinged onthe  road shuld be pulled over.

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sheridan replied to HLaB | 1 year ago
0 likes

HLaB wrote:

The police are saying it's a dodgy cloned plate!

Source?

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nordog | 1 year ago
4 likes

You can't tell me the police could locate that car pretty quickly and find out where all true regs were at that time then if their cars pick up an unknown reg of the black Ford then they must have a good chance of finding the idiot, Even any TV cop could find them. 

 

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wtjs replied to nordog | 1 year ago
2 likes

Even any TV cop could find them

It ought to be more widely appreciated that the 'TV cops' are much better and more conscientious than the real ones, sadly. You only have to watch ITV's 'The Bay' to realise that. Never mind RJ64 ABN- you'd get an OBE in Lancashire for having an MOT pass as recently as that! What about PJ07 NFP? It's not just that the police won't even get up off the sofa for MOT, insurance and VED evasion lasting less than 2 years, it's that they still won't when it's much longer

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HoarseMann replied to wtjs | 1 year ago
4 likes

Pah! That's elementary level vehicle licensing evasion! A dubious looking vehicle was doing the rounds near me a while back with a fictitious registration purporting to be from the year 2027, expertly printed on white laminated card and adorned with a postcode for additional goading points...

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chrisonabike replied to HoarseMann | 1 year ago
1 like

Neat job - get them to do one for your bike!

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Sriracha | 1 year ago
1 like
Quote:

and although parts of the number plate are just about readable...

Why are we looking at a screen-grabbed video of a video?? No wonder it's impossible to see the detail. Even on the OP's twitter feed!
https://mobile.twitter.com/trevawalker/status/1566376393579106307

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HoarseMann replied to Sriracha | 1 year ago
7 likes

This is slightly clearer footage, passenger, plates and broken mirror easier to see: https://mobile.twitter.com/trevawalker/status/1566360209190277120

Still a video of a video though. I suspect it's because the earlier Fly6 cameras saved video as a .avi file (possibly motion jpeg), which most websites won't upload. It will need to be converted to .mp4 using Handbrake or some other tool.

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marmotte27 | 1 year ago
22 likes

"In this case it is not clear, as the vehicle was moving at high speed, why the passenger opened the door, and if it was done deliberately to hit the cyclist."

Fuck me if it isn't crystal clear!

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CanAmSteve | 1 year ago
11 likes

One does wonder when the UK will address the scourge of numberplate cloning. So simple a child can do it

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hawkinspeter replied to CanAmSteve | 1 year ago
13 likes

CanAmSteve wrote:

One does wonder when the UK will address the scourge of numberplate cloning. So simple a child can do it

It's just down to enforcement.

If the police were interested enough, they could set up a ANPR camera along a road and wait further down so that whenever there's a mismatch between reg and car, they can pull it over, impound the car and throw the driver in prison.

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OnYerBike replied to hawkinspeter | 1 year ago
4 likes

Cloned number plates tend to at least match the make/model/colour so that it's not completely obvious at first glance whether or not a plate is cloned even with ANPR. 

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Sriracha replied to OnYerBike | 1 year ago
12 likes

How hard can it be? ANPR network clocks the same registration doing time travel or warp speed between locations, feel both their collars and eliminate one. But if that's too hard, maybe start with the sans-plate vehicles, move on to the illegible ones, before going for the big time?

If they're messing with their plates chances are they're up to no good anyway, so why wait?

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chrisonabike replied to hawkinspeter | 1 year ago
8 likes

Same as with bikes - it's a good idea in theory but the cost of enforcing number plates and vehicle licencing / registration makes it uneconomic at a time when we need to find more money for bankers and to pay off the Tory Party faithful / bribe the shaky "red wall" support deal with a not-a-war-really with Russia / costs of the last round of Covid (add any other things as applicable).

They should just bring in retests / speed cameras and squeeze some more money from the cash-cow hard-pressed motorist.

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CanAmSteve replied to hawkinspeter | 1 year ago
7 likes

Yes, but we know how little active enforcement takes place in reality. This problem is dealt with differently elsewhere, so part of the problem is the "tradition" of the DVLA and how reg plates are managed, etc. It needs a multi-pronged solution 

If you steal a silver Polo you just drive through a few estates until you see a similar one parked up with some leaves on it, then have your mate make up that numberplate (or order one for "display" on eBay)

You're a car thief, so I doubt you'll bother with an MOT or insurance, and any enforcement paperwork will go to the cloned car owner. With any luck, they are in care or otherwise unable to deal with the issue so the coppers will not even be notified for months

And while I am no expert, it does seem that if you are stopped driving the car, you do not need to carry a driving licence (unlike everywhere?) and can just use a fake name and do a runner. I mean, you stole the car in the first place

It should be possible to tag known cloned vehicles so vatious ANPR (digital speed cameras, etc.) can track their activity - certainly this is done to counter terrorism. You know, important stuff

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TriTaxMan replied to CanAmSteve | 1 year ago
5 likes

CanAmSteve wrote:

It should be possible to tag known cloned vehicles so vatious ANPR (digital speed cameras, etc.) can track their activity - certainly this is done to counter terrorism. You know, important stuff

Tagging of number plates is a fairly routine thing if what you see on the likes of Police Interceptors/Road Wars type programs.  They seem to be able to put a marker on number plates of vehicles which have been involved in drug dealing/burglaries etc.

It should be a case of updating the PNC with a marker on the registration and that if it is encountered by a police car they stop the vehicle to do the requisite checks.  Given they think it's on a cloned plate they can stop the vehicle and check the VIN against the reg details because those details are all held by the DVLA.

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qwerty360 replied to CanAmSteve | 1 year ago
2 likes

Not easy, but still should be improvable:

1. Public means of cross checking plate with VIN

2. Seizure of any vehicle found where the plate doesn't belong to it. (Non-returnable, vehicle now belongs to police)

3. Liability for ALL penalties within last X years if found driving a car with cloned plate.

The last should include parking fines(/invoices), bus lane fines, insurance claims etc, etc. As well as an assumption that any individual caught driving was driving during any criminal offences (i.e. it becomes there problem to prove they weren't driving rather than the prosecutions problem to prove they were)

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open_roads replied to qwerty360 | 1 year ago
0 likes

"Seizure of any vehicle found where the plate doesn't belong to it. (Non-returnable, vehicle now belongs to police)"

The only flaw in that is if your local scrote swaps the number plate for their identical but unregistered car with your car's number plate.

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mark1a replied to open_roads | 1 year ago
1 like

It will still be evident that plate does not belong to car, VIN won't match. 

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