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Shocking video of light truck driver ramming cyclist off bike sparks 'debate' online

Some observers and a tabloid news website have suggested that the cyclist may be somewhat to blame, simply because there is a narrow cycle lane next to the main carriageway

When a cyclist is viciously assaulted by a driver for legally travelling on a road, you'd think it would be pretty cut and dry who is to blame... unfortunately that doesn't appear to be the case with the shocking clip below, after a tabloid suggested the cyclist may be at fault for not riding in "the proper cycle lane".  

The video was filmed in Christchurch, New Zealand, and was posted to the cycling safety Facebook group UpRide. The post says: "This is what cold blooded assault looks like"; and after we see the driver of a light Izuzu truck continually beeping his horn and getting far too close to the cyclist in front, the driver eventually rams the cyclist off their bike at 01:01 into the clip. 

The post continues: "The important thing to note while watching this UpRide is that the road they were on has a 30km/h speed limit, and the rider was doing 30km/h. He was on his way to work and DOING THE SPEED LIMIT! The rest you can see for yourself". 

Much like the UK, it isn't mandatory for cyclists to use dedicated cycle lanes where one is available in New Zealand. As the clip progresses, there are numerous instances where it becomes more apparent why the cyclist might want to stick to the main carriageway rather than use the unprotected cycle lane - such as parked cars, bus stops and roadworks - which would have forced them out of the lane anyway. A number of commenters on the UpRide Facebook page also noted that there was another lane for the truck driver to move into, if he wished to break the speed limit. 

It seems police had far less sympathy for the driver than tabloid newspapers and ill-informed people on social media, as the 65-year-old male was charged with dangerous driving causing injury according to Star News. A police spokeswoman said the arrest was made on 3rd August, and the driver is due to reappear at Christchurch District Court in December. 

The admin of the UpRide Facebook group added: "The truck driver claimed the rider was "all over the road", but the footage showed a very different picture. We will post this again when the courts have made their finding. Until then stay safe, stay strong and record your ride."

After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake. 

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