Canberra’s peak cycling body Pedal Power has labelled a fine handed to the driver of a vehicle that collided with a cyclist last October “grossly inadequate”.
The collision occurred on 3 October 2020. The cyclist was riding towards William Hovell Drive when he was hit by a vehicle towing a trailer.
The cyclist was taken to hospital and treated for his injuries from which he has since recovered.
However, Pedal Power spokesperson Lil Bryant-Johnson said Pedal Power will continue pushing for stronger penalties after the driver was today issued with an infringement for negligent driving, which attracts a fine of just $393 and three demerit points.
“This fine seems grossly inadequate for negligent driving which seriously endangered a person’s life,” Pedal Power said via its Facebook page.
There was a appalling crash in Canberra on Saturday afternoon when a car towing a trailer side-swiped a person riding a bike.Many Canberrans may have already seen the dash cam footage of the incident where the driver illegally crossed the medium strip to pass the bike rider on the left hand side at speed.The video shows that there was good visibility, and there appeared to have been plenty of time for the driver to have slowed to allow the riders to complete their crossing.The accident shows a complete and reckless lack of concern by the driver for the bike riders.Pedal Power has been advised that rider who was hit by the car was taken to hospital and has been treated for their injuries. Pedal Power has been in contact with ACT Policing about the crash and urged them to take strong action against the driver. They have advise that they attended the accident and that no charges were laid at the time! Having now received the dash-cam footage of the crash, ACT Police will continue their investigation and will report the result. This incident highlights the need for further driver education and stronger enforcement of the minimum passing laws.Anyone who may have witnessed or have additional dam-cam footage of the collision or other information that could assist police is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, via the Crime Stoppers ACT website. Please quote reference 6641095. Information can be provided anonymously.
Posted by Pedal Power ACT: Canberra Region Cycling on Monday, October 5, 2020
Ms Bryant-Johnson said Pedal Power pursued the collision with ACT Policing and urged them to take strong action against the driver after dashcam footage revealed the severity of the accident.
“We’ve been following the accident since it happened and it really has taken a lot of action on our behalf to get the result so far, but we are glad that there at least has been a result today,” she told Region Media.
“We’re pretty shocked and we’re going to keep pursuing it by seeking urgent answers from the ACT Government about the appropriateness of the penalties in our Road Transport Act to deter such dangerous driving and effectively protect our community’s vulnerable road users.”
The driver of the vehicle was penalised only after dashcam footage emerged of the collision.
The footage shows the driver making a last-minute decision to cross lanes without indicating before the vehicle side-swipes the first of two cyclists. The video shows there was good visibility and there appeared to have been plenty of time for the driver to have slowed to wait for the riders to pass.
Ms Bryant-Johnson said the collision shows a complete and reckless lack of concern by the driver for the bike riders.
“We think this is something the community would be really surprised about, especially with what our laws say and whether there are better things we can do to protect vulnerable road users.
“This incident highlights the need for further driver education and stronger enforcement of the minimum passing laws because we are meant to look after each other,” Ms Bryant-Johnson said.
One of the commenters on the Pedal Power Facebook page labelled the collision as “absolutely disgusting”.
“You get a bigger penalty for using your mobile phone – $447 plus four demerit points.”