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Three cyclists hospitalised in hit-and-run on Kent A2 — police appeal

Officers urge motor repairers to be on lookout for damaged Ford following incident on Tuesday evening

Police in Kent have alerted motor repairers to look out for a damaged Ford vehicle, possibly silver, following a hit and run incident on Tuesday evening that left three cyclists in hospital.

The driver of the vehicle, said to be missing a black plastic nearside mirror and to have damage consistent with a collision, failed to stop at the scene of the collision on the eastbound carriageway of the A2 close to the Bridge turn-off near Canterbury at 10.10pm.

Two or the riders, both aged 24 and one from Cumbria, the other from South Derbyshire, were treated for minor injuries at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford.

The third cyclist, aged 25 and from Cumbria, suffered more serious injuries and was taken by air ambulance to South London’s King’s College Hospital.

Chief Inspector Matthew Kendall of Kent Police roads policing unit said: “The person who was driving the Ford may be seeking to repair the damage to his or her vehicle as quickly as possible so we would ask anyone who works in the vehicle repair industry to be particularly vigilant and contact us if they are suspicious.

“Alternatively, if you know someone who has a Ford with the damage described please contact police with the details as we are investigating the circumstances around the collision.”

Anyone with information about the incident is requested to call 101 quoting reference number 20140722-1798.

Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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35 comments

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Beaufort | 9 years ago
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There is no way anyone on a bike should be on the A2 at 10pm, this is a motorway type road with no hard shoulder or space for cyclists off the main carriageway. Of course the car should've stopped at the scene of the accident, that's the right thing to do and I'd hope most folk would do that.

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Matt eaton replied to Beaufort | 9 years ago
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Beaufort wrote:

There is no way anyone on a bike should be on the A2 at 10pm, this is a motorway type road with no hard shoulder or space for cyclists off the main carriageway. Of course the car should've stopped at the scene of the accident, that's the right thing to do and I'd hope most folk would do that.

It might not be a very friendly road but it's not a motorway. If it's unsuitable for cyclists it should have a M designation; the fact that it doesn't suggests to anyone without local knowledge that it is a cycle-able road.

We don't know for sure where these lads were headed but as someone already pointed out there are not a lot of alternatives to using this road without adding a lot of distance to the ride. All well and good for a Sunday morning spin for a Kent local but no much good if you're actually trying to get somewhere.

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truffy | 9 years ago
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So you're familiar with the route and any blackspots. That's good for starters.

Unfamiliarity can be tricksy, innit?

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levermonkey | 9 years ago
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1) For all those who say that these cyclist should not have been there I have one Question. Why not?

2) A little exercise for you. Anyone can join in. Plot a sensible and realistic route from the Escort Point at the Kent end of the Dartford crossing to Thamesmead. Bonus points if your prepared to ride it.

n.b.
I do this route often as a commute in both directions. It's not for the faint hearted. In explanation I meet my work colleague who has the pick-up at Thurrock Services; he lives in Essex.

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FluffyKittenofT... | 10 years ago
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The comments about not cycling on that road sound like victim-blaming to me.
I've ended up on hideous A-roads on occasion, when going somewhere where I wasn't familar with the route. Especially if its dark you might have no choice but to keep pressing on (while thinking 'how the hell do I get off this road?')

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Leodis | 10 years ago
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3 points, 20 hours community service and £45 fine max.

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Matt eaton | 10 years ago
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To be fair to mrmo I think that the comparison was intended to highlight the difference in police attitudes to two crimes that have similar outcomes rather than to label this incident as attempted murder. It's a fair point too. Hitting a group of people with a car and driving off, potentially leaving them for dead, could be considered just as sinister as murder which in most cases is carried out for a reason rather than a random violent act against a stranger.

Dangerous drivers could even be considered a bigger threat to society than your average murderer as they endanger the public at large and damage lives without discrimination.

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mrmo replied to Matt eaton | 10 years ago
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Matt eaton wrote:

Dangerous drivers could even be considered a bigger threat to society than your average murderer as they endanger the public at large and damage lives without discrimination.

Exactly, if you are calloulous enough to hit three people and drive off what does that say about the person?

Something i was reading a while ago murderers are on the whole safe for society at large, there is almost always a reason, and as long as you don't fit the target, (jilted lover, revenge, gang, etc) very unlikely that a murderer is actually a threat to you or anyone else.

A driver, well they have shown no respect for life, what will stop them again? Which do you think is more dangerous to society? Which should the police be concerned about?

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cryocon | 10 years ago
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I am no way condoning the drivers actions, but you do have to question why the cyclists were on this road in the first place. I am very familiar with this road and at that location it temporarily turns into a 3 lane dual carriage way, with a slip road coming on then off. Also at 10.10pm it would be pretty much dark. I don't like that stretch of road driving a car when it' s light, so on a bike when it's dark is just crazy.

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truffy replied to cryocon | 10 years ago
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cryocon wrote:

I am no way condoning the drivers actions, but you do have to question why the cyclists were on this road in the first place. I am very familiar with this road and at that location it temporarily turns into a 3 lane dual carriage way, with a slip road coming on then off. Also at 10.10pm it would be pretty much dark. I don't like that stretch of road driving a car when it' s light, so on a bike when it's dark is just crazy.

I'm also familiar with that road, and it would scare the living crap out of me to cycle it. But I rather suspect that your observation won't go down well with the fulminating cyclistas here.

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Matt eaton replied to cryocon | 10 years ago
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cryocon wrote:

I am no way condoning the drivers actions, but you do have to question why the cyclists were on this road in the first place. I am very familiar with this road and at that location it temporarily turns into a 3 lane dual carriage way, with a slip road coming on then off. Also at 10.10pm it would be pretty much dark. I don't like that stretch of road driving a car when it' s light, so on a bike when it's dark is just crazy.

There are a bunch of good reasons they might be on that road. Perhaps it was the most direct route to their desination or maybe they weren't familiar with the roads in the are and were simply following road signs. As it was dark they may have opted for major roads as they can feel safer (closer to help if its needed compared to a rural lane in the middle of the night) and depending on the lights they were using it may have been preferable to share the road with cars (and their lights) rather than getting off the beaten track.

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SimonS replied to cryocon | 10 years ago
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cryocon wrote:

I am no way condoning the drivers actions, but you do have to question why the cyclists were on this road in the first place. I am very familiar with this road and at that location it temporarily turns into a 3 lane dual carriage way, with a slip road coming on then off. Also at 10.10pm it would be pretty much dark. I don't like that stretch of road driving a car when it' s light, so on a bike when it's dark is just crazy.

Like you I suspect the road is a horrible place to be but......

They're not local riders (all from North of UK) and riding late at night. Making a few sweeping assumptions I'd say likely this was the English leg of a on a long distance tour, probably heading to Dover to catch a Ferry. Looking at the map there don't seem to be a great number of alternatives.

They wouldn't have known what the road was like in advance and A roads vary from country lanes (http://tinyurl.com/o2qhcz7 in Yorkshire) to 3 lane roads that are indistinguishable from motorways.

It's quite possible there is a 'cycle route' along the road that will be shown on a map - such as there is on the A3 from London to Guildford where it is signposted down a narrow 'hard shoulder' with unprotected crossings across slip roads.

http://tinyurl.com/otslwdn. This http://tinyurl.com/nznvv39 is the point where you run across the slip road at 90 degrees, remount your bike and join what is then 5 lanes of traffic on a cycle lane that is shown on that sign but doesn't actually seem to exist on the ground.

Even sections of Sustrans 'national cycle network' run on major A roads....

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SimonS replied to SimonS | 10 years ago
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And right on cue...

http://www.getsurrey.co.uk/news/surrey-news/cyclist-dies-after-late-nigh...

Cyclist dies after being hit by car on A3

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Matt eaton replied to SimonS | 10 years ago
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SimonS wrote:
cryocon wrote:

I am no way condoning the drivers actions, but you do have to question why the cyclists were on this road in the first place. I am very familiar with this road and at that location it temporarily turns into a 3 lane dual carriage way, with a slip road coming on then off. Also at 10.10pm it would be pretty much dark. I don't like that stretch of road driving a car when it' s light, so on a bike when it's dark is just crazy.

Like you I suspect the road is a horrible place to be but......

They're not local riders (all from North of UK) and riding late at night. Making a few sweeping assumptions I'd say likely this was the English leg of a on a long distance tour, probably heading to Dover to catch a Ferry. Looking at the map there don't seem to be a great number of alternatives.

They wouldn't have known what the road was like in advance and A roads vary from country lanes (http://tinyurl.com/o2qhcz7 in Yorkshire) to 3 lane roads that are indistinguishable from motorways.

It's quite possible there is a 'cycle route' along the road that will be shown on a map - such as there is on the A3 from London to Guildford where it is signposted down a narrow 'hard shoulder' with unprotected crossings across slip roads.

http://tinyurl.com/otslwdn. This http://tinyurl.com/nznvv39 is the point where you run across the slip road at 90 degrees, remount your bike and join what is then 5 lanes of traffic on a cycle lane that is shown on that sign but doesn't actually seem to exist on the ground.

Even sections of Sustrans 'national cycle network' run on major A roads....

I'd second your thoughts on this. If I were planning a long-distance ride on unknown roads I would certainly use A roads as the basis. B roads also vary considerably and some of them are little more than single-lane tracks with very poor surfaces; not ideal if you want to make good progress. A roads also tend to be the most direct route to the places that people want to get to.

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HiCadence | 10 years ago
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Keep posting these articles Road.CC the more attention this problem gets the more awareness it creates and the more pressure it puts on the government to take a serious look at the law that lets dangerous drivers like this get off with a slap on the wrists.

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Airzound | 10 years ago
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I am sure on this road or adjacent to it there would have been CCTV which may show the vehicle and maybe the driver.

This is why sadly head cams are so necessary when now riding on the roads.

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A V Lowe | 10 years ago
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@nuclear coffee it is used all the time, but not always announced. Sometimes key detail may be kept quiet as it can corroborate the identification of the driver involved.

Generally any impact with a 50+Kg adult on a bike can do serious damage to the car. Last car that T-boned me had £600+ as I rolled over the bonnet and windscreen. Above 30mph car often beyond economic repair

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rggfddne | 10 years ago
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I wonder... should this angle (using those with the knowledge of a newly damaged car to track down hit and runs) be exploited better/more often?

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mrmo | 10 years ago
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hit and run or attempted murder? How much effort would the police put into the later? and how much would they put into the former?

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AyBee replied to mrmo | 10 years ago
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mrmo wrote:

hit and run or attempted murder? How much effort would the police put into the later? and how much would they put into the former?

Attempted murder?!?! In future, before you spout complete rubbish, please educate yourself about the words you're using!

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dp24 replied to AyBee | 10 years ago
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AyBee wrote:

Attempted murder?!?! In future, before you spout complete rubbish, please educate yourself about the words you're using!

Whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident, it's perfectly possible to commit attempted murder using a vehicle, so why the outrage?

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truffy replied to dp24 | 10 years ago
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dp24 wrote:
AyBee wrote:

Attempted murder?!?! In future, before you spout complete rubbish, please educate yourself about the words you're using!

Whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident, it's perfectly possible to commit attempted murder using a vehicle, so why the outrage?

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

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AyBee replied to truffy | 10 years ago
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truffy wrote:
dp24 wrote:
AyBee wrote:

Attempted murder?!?! In future, before you spout complete rubbish, please educate yourself about the words you're using!

Whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident, it's perfectly possible to commit attempted murder using a vehicle, so why the outrage?

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

Precisely. It's also extremely unlikely in my opinion that 3 cyclists all hit on a busy road and to varying degrees of contact were deliberately targetted.

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dp24 replied to truffy | 10 years ago
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truffy wrote:

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

Which is why I said "whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident".

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truffy replied to dp24 | 10 years ago
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dp24 wrote:
truffy wrote:

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

Which is why I said "whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident".

Innocent until proved guilty. Think about it!

(although drivers seem to be guilty until proven innocent on road.cc)

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Housecathst replied to truffy | 10 years ago
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truffy wrote:
dp24 wrote:
truffy wrote:

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

Which is why I said "whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident".

Innocent until proved guilty. Think about it!

(although drivers seem to be guilty until proven innocent on road.cc)

Well, there guilty of leaving the seen of an accident at the very least.

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truffy replied to Housecathst | 10 years ago
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Housecathst wrote:
truffy wrote:
dp24 wrote:
truffy wrote:

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

Which is why I said "whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident".

Innocent until proved guilty. Think about it!

(although drivers seem to be guilty until proven innocent on road.cc)

Well, there guilty of leaving the seen of an accident at the very least.

Whilst true, leaving the scene of an accident is not proof of intent to kill (i.e. murder, which was the subject of the discussion).

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FluffyKittenofT... replied to truffy | 10 years ago
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truffy wrote:
Housecathst wrote:
truffy wrote:
dp24 wrote:
truffy wrote:

I guess because 'attempted murder' indicates intent, which is unknown. Possibly?

Which is why I said "whilst we don't know the circumstances of this incident".

Innocent until proved guilty. Think about it!

(although drivers seem to be guilty until proven innocent on road.cc)

Well, there guilty of leaving the seen of an accident at the very least.

Whilst true, leaving the scene of an accident is not proof of intent to kill (i.e. murder, which was the subject of the discussion).

And nobody, as far as I can see, claimed that whoever it was was definitely guilty of any particular offence, certainly not attempted murder. So I'm not sure what you are arguing with or what the purpose of mentioning 'innocent till proven guilty' is.

Speculating about the exact offence is completely pointless of course. But I'm not sure that was even what the original comment was doing anyway.

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truffy replied to FluffyKittenofTindalos | 10 years ago
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FluffyKittenofTindalos wrote:

Speculating about the exact offence is completely pointless of course. But I'm not sure that was even what the original comment was doing anyway.

Further up there's a mention of attempted murder, which seems a little OTT.

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gavben replied to truffy | 10 years ago
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Murder can be committed by action or inaction. If the driver caused serious injury, and deliberately left without providing any assistance, causing the victim to die, that could be prosecuted as murder. As such, leaving the scene of an accident, knowing you are likely to have caused serious injury and failing to help or call for assistance could reasonably be considered attempted murder.

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