I got out to find a cyclist on his knees at the back of VeeKay cradling his bike. The front wheel seemed to have been totally destroyed. It appeared to have been manufactured from some composite material rather than the steel or alloy wheels I remember. The front forks didn't appear to be at the correct angle either.
I enquired after the condition of the rider, only to be met with what, in my experience, are the usual pejorative and vituperative comments about car / van / truck drivers which I've heard so many times before in Court, some of which I suppose I must put down to shock on his part.
My immediate reaction was to wonder why a motorist, who had been stationary in traffic for several minutes could be the target of such comments when it was the cyclist who had caused the impact.
I didn't get a chance to say much though as a young woman from several cars back had run up and given him what for about the way he had "furiously" cycled between the lines of stationary cars on the dual-carriageway. Suffice to say that she was clearly not impressed with either his cycling ability or his family heritage
It appears that he had been going like a proverbial dingbat and had had his head down and not seen the car in front of VeeKay which was changing from lane 2 to lane 1 and being in stationary traffic was straddled across the gap between lanes in time to stop and took avoiding action which ended in him using VeeKay as a convenient place to stop.
Anyway, in a cloud of expletives, he made his way over to the pavement with no apparent injury to himself, and, of course, no question as to whether he had been the cause of any injury in the car he had just collided with.
I asked him to wait and give me his details, to which I received a two word reply with the second word being "off"
I did hear a muttered comment about "insurance" as he departed though and so did several of the car drivers in the vicinity and within a few seconds I was handed pieces of paper from four of those drivers giving me names and phone numbers as potential witnesses. In return I thanked them for their consideration and gave them my phone number as a gesture of good-will.
Set me to thinking though. In the event of that sort of thing happening where the motorist didn't have the benefit of witnesses, what might be the result if the cyclist chose to make an issue out of it with the Police and was economical with the truth as a prelude to a civil claim for compensation?
Or what about if there had been damage to the car or a passenger in the car? The cyclist is not obliged to have any form of insurance and could not have been lawfully detained at the roadside unless there were grounds to believe that he had committed an offence liable to a custodial sentence.
In a way, I hope that the cyclist does decide to have a go. Especially as, since I've been home, two people have phoned me to make sure I was OK and not in shock and to confirm their willingness to act as witnesses should it become necessary.
I merely report the facts and muse upon the possible outcomes. This is not an invitation to a "Bash the cyclist fest".
Oh... and damage to VeeKay? Not a scratch. Not a blemish on the bumper