Cyclist killed on M4 motorway - Update on driver charges

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Cyclist killed on M4 motorway - Update on driver charges

Postby Boognoss » Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:49 am

http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/cyclists-mown ... -rz7v.html

If the details of the article prove true (swerved and hit) then this driver reserves to rot in gaol (and closely followed by hell).
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by BNA » Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:52 am

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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby Missy24 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 10:52 am

Bloody hell, makes you want to cry... Gonna go hug my mum!
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby sandman » Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:38 am

Booger, thread show probably be in the NSW forum....

Just saw a few guys posts on FB....Not much you can say at all, we haev lots of B doubles and road trains in Alice, spose thats why we ride at 5:30am so we dont have to deal with them...

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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby Boognoss » Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:44 am

sandman wrote:Booger, thread show probably be in the NSW forum....

Just saw a few guys posts on FB....Not much you can say at all, we haev lots of B doubles and road trains in Alice, spose thats why we ride at 5:30am so we dont have to deal with them...

Sandman


Thought that too mate but figured that this type of incident is of general enough interest. :)
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby greyhoundtom » Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:58 am

On the one hand it makes me feel sick that this has happened to another cyclist, and not forgetting those seriously injured and some of whom may finish up in a wheelchair, their families, wives, mums and dads.

On the other hand it makes me feel so BL**DY angry that drivers out there are not taking better care driving their lethal killing machines!

I believe it is really long past the time when ALL cyclists should organise themselves into an Australian wide Cyclist Union, and become a formidable force to pressure the politicians on both sides of the House for more rapid and far reaching changes to make cycling safer for everyone.

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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby herzog » Sat Apr 10, 2010 12:05 pm

sandman wrote:Booger, thread show probably be in the NSW forum....



No way, this concerns all of us. Wonder if the bloke was texting or something? I'm sure the coppers will get his phone records.

I must say though, I'm not a fan of riding in a breakdown lanes with a 70+kph speed differential.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby jules21 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 12:19 pm

this is terribly sad.

herzog wrote:No way, this concerns all of us. Wonder if the bloke was texting or something? I'm sure the coppers will get his phone records.

unfortunately, if he was texting he was unlikely to have finished it and it wouldn't register.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby ScottyL » Sat Apr 10, 2010 12:36 pm

My heart goes to those who survived...and to the family of the tradgic victim
:cry:
All the best to you.
Oh I think my heart just stopped.....there it goes....

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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby herzog » Sat Apr 10, 2010 12:40 pm

jules21 wrote:this is terribly sad.

herzog wrote:No way, this concerns all of us. Wonder if the bloke was texting or something? I'm sure the coppers will get his phone records.

unfortunately, if he was texting he was unlikely to have finished it and it wouldn't register.


The phone records can show if he had just received one (and may have therefore been reading/responding), or had sent one in the minutes prior.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby sogood » Sat Apr 10, 2010 12:47 pm

Terrible news and sympathy goes out to the families and riders involved. Hope there'd be a transparent investigation to this.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby oldplodder » Sat Apr 10, 2010 12:49 pm

Advocacy is the only way we are going to stop this carnage. Ring your local member and bend their ear. Remind him, "We are cyclists and we vote too" If the policy in Denmark was adopted here the drivers would be a hell of a lot more careful around cyclists. Their law states that in any accident involving a cyclist and motor vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle is automatically deemed liable and is responsible for all costs. If that were the law in Australia death and injury to cyclists would be dramatically cut. I was hit by a car whilst cycling home from work over a year ago and am still recovering. The driver got off with a minor inconvenience. The truck driver in this horrific incident will get off with manslaughter. We need to take action now!
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby Percrime » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:19 pm

Manslaughter? Not in a fit. Culpable driving bargained down to dangerous driving most likely. Although we can home.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby jules21 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:21 pm

oldplodder wrote:If the policy in Denmark was adopted here the drivers would be a hell of a lot more careful around cyclists. Their law states that in any accident involving a cyclist and motor vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle is automatically deemed liable and is responsible for all costs. If that were the law in Australia death and injury to cyclists would be dramatically cut.

australia has no-fault injury insurance, so i suspect they'd only be liable for property damages. there's a discussion of it in another thread here somewhere.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby ve safari » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:40 pm

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That picture makes me so very angry.

RIP my fellow cyclists.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby jules21 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:44 pm

forgive me for speculating, but from that pic, it seems possible the guy was dozing off and started following the off-ramp road markings. if that turns out to be true, a lot more people than just the driver become potentially liable for the cyclist's death.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby hannos » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:48 pm

Who do we write to to put a rocket under them in order to get some decent cycling protection?
Perhaps incorporate some OS rules into the letter?
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby familyguy » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:58 pm

jules21 wrote:forgive me for speculating, but from that pic, it seems possible the guy was dozing off and started following the off-ramp road markings. if that turns out to be true, a lot more people than just the driver become potentially liable for the cyclist's death.


Such as?

From the location in the picture you cannot put any blame on the cyclists. They seem to have made the crossing from one side of the off-ramp to the other and been in a legally suitable location. But with 15T of truck vs 90kg of bike and rider, its got nothing to do with 'legality' and everything to do with situational awareness and prevention.

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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby herzog » Sat Apr 10, 2010 1:59 pm

jules21 wrote:forgive me for speculating, but from that pic, it seems possible the guy was dozing off and started following the off-ramp road markings. if that turns out to be true, a lot more people than just the driver become potentially liable for the cyclist's death.


Who else would be liable? A dozing truckie can't really start pointing the finger at others surely?
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby wombatK » Sat Apr 10, 2010 2:27 pm

ve safari wrote:Image

That picture makes me so very angry.

RIP my fellow cyclists.

Absolutely shocking. My condolences to the family and friends of the deceased, and thoughts and prayers for the survivors.

It appears the police haved place a marker maybe 15 cm or so inside the left hand lane (i.e. not on the shoulder). Be careful about rushing to judge the driver - there may be a claim that the cyclist swerved into the lane (e.g. to overtake others in the bunch) in an unsafe manner.

Can anyone think of a reason why there'd be no skid marks from the truck (e.g. do they have ABS on trailer brakes that would prevent it ) ?

Coroners report will take some time, but if there's no charges against the driver, the marker might point to why. It's a shame the police and media reports don't give us more information.

Be careful out there. Just this morning, I'd posted a suggestion in the commuting thread that the M5 shoulder is relatively safe. Not going to withdraw it, but you do need to be very careful especially if riding with a group - all the recent motorway cyclist fatalities in Sydney have involved cyclists riding in groups.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby jules21 » Sat Apr 10, 2010 2:29 pm

herzog wrote: Who else would be liable? A dozing truckie can't really start pointing the finger at others surely?

if his bosses have encouraged or even knew about his exceeding driving hours limits - if that turned out to be a factor, they certainly can and should probably expect to be held liable for the consequences.

wombatK wrote: Can anyone think of a reason why there'd be no skid marks from the truck (e.g. do they have ABS on trailer brakes that would prevent it ) ?

B-doubles have ABS on the prime mover, but most don't have it on the trailers. again, no skid marks is sometimes an indicator of driver fatigue as a factor.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby il padrone » Sat Apr 10, 2010 3:06 pm

oldplodder wrote:If the policy in Denmark was adopted here the drivers would be a hell of a lot more careful around cyclists. Their law states that in any accident involving a cyclist and motor vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle is automatically deemed liable and is responsible for all costs. If that were the law in Australia death and injury to cyclists would be dramatically cut.

While I hear what you are saying and agree that introducing the principle of strict liability on Australian roads would be a great moderating effect on extreme hoon behaviour and straight-forward lazy driving, I think two things about this incident are crucial:

1. Strict liability is of limited benefit if you get hit and are dead.

2. I doubt that cyclists in Denmark or other European nations ride their bikes on 110kmh freeways, in particular in urban high-volume settings.

Personally I don't think a road like the M4 or others like Melbourne's Monash Freeway or Eastlink are suitable places for riding a bike.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby ruscook » Sat Apr 10, 2010 3:48 pm

I used to think the M4 was ok, and have ridden it about this time quite often. This type of accident (hate that word it's not an accident, its negligent) is just so unpredictable.

My deepest condolences to family and friends of all 4 cyclists involved...

The location looks to be just west of the Northern Rd exit ramp. Another photo shows what is probably the Northern Rd overpass.
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The first sentence of the SMH report says "Fatigue may have caused a truck driver to veer into the breakdown lane and mow down a group of cyclists, killing one, on the M4 in Sydney’s west"
So at this stage, there's a fair indication of where the fault lies at this stage.

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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby oldplodder » Sat Apr 10, 2010 3:51 pm

The point I am making is that drivers really don't suffer much when they kill or injure cyclists. If the price they have to pay is high enough then they will take more care on the roads. I read in a safety article about driving that if all vehicles were fitted with an exploding device that targeted the driver in a collision then the roads would be completely safe. It has to be an attitudinal change by drivers towards cyclists. Good drivers aren't born, they learn from others. Drivers are responsible for the safety of other road users including cyclists and pedestrians. At present the whole scenario is tilted towards the driver. The onus needs to be tipped the other way so that they consider the consequences of their actions behind the wheel. I was wearing a hi-vis reflective vest with front and rear flashers in broad daylight. The driver didn't see me because he didn't look (by his own admission). Every day I see cars drift left into the cycle lane, enough so, that if a cyclist was in the lane they would be hit by their car. As they pass I see that they are distracted by a multitude of other tasks other that concentrating on the road and traffic. I see drivers talking on hand held mobile phones, texting, eating, smoking, reaching over to the passenger side, reading, fiddling with the radio/CD player, looking at the GPS. Their attention is not on the road. That is how they kill and injure cyclists.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby ruscook » Sat Apr 10, 2010 4:06 pm

Plodder,I definitely don't have any issue with what you say, but would expand it from "drivers" to road users. We're ALL equally responsible for our actions on the road. I'd hate to see huge penalties for drivers, just end up allowing us to get away with anything. There's bogans on bikes too!
Last edited by ruscook on Sat Apr 10, 2010 6:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cyclist killed on Sydney's M4 motorway this morning

Postby greyhoundtom » Sat Apr 10, 2010 4:14 pm

oldplodder wrote:Advocacy is the only way we are going to stop this carnage. Ring your local member and bend their ear. Remind him, "We are cyclists and we vote too" If the policy in Denmark was adopted here the drivers would be a hell of a lot more careful around cyclists. Their law states that in any accident involving a cyclist and motor vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle is automatically deemed liable and is responsible for all costs. If that were the law in Australia death and injury to cyclists would be dramatically cut. I was hit by a car whilst cycling home from work over a year ago and am still recovering. The driver got off with a minor inconvenience. The truck driver in this horrific incident will get off with manslaughter. We need to take action now!

+1000

Something DOES need to be done to stop the slaughter of cyclists on our roads by drivers that simply look at having a bingle as a minor inconvenience because the insurance and third party will take care of it anyway, and as a force of habit do not consider the consequences of hitting a cyclist as compared to another car.

To achieve that aim a much stronger and a more active pressure group is required than those that currently are supposed to represent the needs of cyclists.

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