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Video: The collision with a cyclist for which a Bristol driver declined to apologise

Police send Notice of Intended Prosecution

A Bristol cyclist who was hit by a driver while cycling to work failed to get an apology out of the person responsible. After reporting the incident to police, Jake Johnson says that the motorist has been given three penalty points and a £100 fine.

The Bristol Post reports that Johnson was riding to work in Gordano at around 8.20am on January 31 when he was knocked into the kerb by a passing BMW. The driver continued on their way afterwards.

Johnson told road.cc that there was no oncoming traffic. “It is approaching a bend, so maybe they were protecting themselves in case something came around it.”

He said that he had two lights on the front and two on the back – all flashing – and was also wearing hi-vis gloves and a hi-vis bag cover.

Johnson managed to stay upright after bumping the kerb, which allowed him to follow the car. After seeing the driver pull in at a nearby business park, he left a note on the windscreen and included his phone number.

The note read: “I was on my bike. You ran me off the road and hit me. You didn’t stop. Feel free to call and apologise. The footage will be going to police.”

The person didn’t call and Johnson submitted the footage to Avon and Somerset Police.

“It was extremely quickly they got back to me,” he said.

He was told that officers had reviewed the footage and had deemed that the incident be dealt with via a Notice of Intended Prosecution to the driver which, if accepted, would mean a £100 fine and three points on their licence.

“I was happy that I got something at all – and so quickly,” said Johnson reflecting on the police response. “But once I’d stopped to think about it, it doesn’t seem like something that will make the driver think twice about their actions.”

Avon and Somerset Police launched a close pass operation last year and announced that its version would also involve even off duty police officers carrying cameras while out cycling.

Alex has written for more cricket publications than the rest of the road.cc team combined. Despite the apparent evidence of this picture, he doesn't especially like cake.

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13 comments

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David9694 | 5 years ago
1 like

 

A couple of imaginary scenes from this driver’s life:

At the water cooler on 31 January “how was the traffic today mate?”

At insurance renewal time “God, your insurance is sky high this year. I can’t understand why you stay with that company”. 

Would Road.cc readers care to speculate on the replies?  I just wonder how people that do this sort of thing actually live.

If there is any injury to man or machine, Jake  needs to find him a claims lawyer. 

Avatar
zero_trooper | 5 years ago
2 likes

'He was told that officers had reviewed the footage and had deemed that the incident be dealt with via a Notice of Intended Prosecution to the driver which, if accepted, would mean a £100 fine and three points on their licence.'

A bit of a mix up here. I think that the rider JOHNSON means an endorsable fixed penalty notice, similar to a speeding ticket. Certain police officers (traffic officers?) can issue them, but usually for offences that they have witnessed. Whether watching a submitted video counts as 'witnessing', I'm not to sure.

I would be very interested to know if the driver actually accepted it, because if not (i.e. they dispute it), then it should go to court. Either way, JOHNSON, as a victim, should have been informed in writing of the final outcome.

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Milkfloat | 5 years ago
0 likes

Report says that drive was sent a NIP, it does not mean they accepted it and took the points and fine.  They could have disputed it. 

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felixcat replied to Milkfloat | 5 years ago
0 likes
Milkfloat wrote:

Report says that drive was sent a NIP, it does not mean they accepted it and took the points and fine.  They could have disputed it. 

I believe NIP stands for Notice of Intended Prosecution, which has to be served within a certain time, but is not, in itself, a prosecution. If it is not sent in time a prosecution cannot proceed.

Avatar
zero_trooper replied to felixcat | 5 years ago
2 likes
felixcat wrote:
Milkfloat wrote:

Report says that drive was sent a NIP, it does not mean they accepted it and took the points and fine.  They could have disputed it. 

I believe NIP stands for Notice of Intended Prosecution, which has to be served within a certain time, but is not, in itself, a prosecution. If it is not sent in time a prosecution cannot proceed.

 

Quite right Felixcat. A Notice of Intended Prosecution has to served on the registered keeper of the motor vehicle involved (who obviously may not necessarily have been the driver at the time), within 14 days. By 'served' I believe that posted to the registered keeper's address will suffice.

It's a bit of archaic paperwork, but basically acts as a reminder to the 'driver' that an incident has been reported to the police which is being investigated. So if it takes the police three months to trace and interview the driver, the driver can't turn round and say 'Sorry, it was too long ago I can't possibly remember'.

The NIP is only used for certain offences, including driving without due care and attention and speeding. It's not required for accidents where the driver should have been aware what had happened.

This is why any cyclist reporting a motoring incident to the police should insist on a NIP being sent, in order to leave the door open for further action. If they get fobbed off and eventually persuade/demand the police investigate further, the '14 day' rule may prohibit any further prosecution. Just because a NIP has been sent doesn't mean that prosecution will automatically follow.

Hope that helps. 

Avatar
Simon E | 5 years ago
6 likes

I'd call that DANGEROUSLY close. Nice try hoping a BMW driver would apologise.

3 points and £100 for hitting another vehicle and not stopping = getting off incredibly lightly. I bet West Midlands traffic cops' response would be much more effective.

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felixcat replied to Simon E | 5 years ago
6 likes
Simon E wrote:

Nice try hoping a BMW driver would apologise.

 

A nasty piece of driving.

All this stuff about the characters of the drivers of different brands of car goes right over my head. I can't tell most cars apart unless I look at the badge, which I don't. Some are bigger than others but I draw no conclusions about which behave better or worse.

I just don't trust any of them.

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Richard D replied to Simon E | 5 years ago
4 likes
Simon E wrote:

3 points and £100 for hitting another vehicle and not stopping = getting off incredibly lightly. I bet West Midlands traffic cops' response would be much more effective.

How much would you like to bet?  Because I'd take the bet in a heartbeat.

West Mids Police sent the driver who clipped me during a similar close pass to a driver's education course.  Zero points on the licence (and nothing by way of an apology to me either).

And that only happened after I kicked up a stink.  Their first response was to say that as no collision had occurred (wrong), the driver had committed no offence (also wrong), and that there was insufficient evidence despite it being on video (so wrong it's hard to know where to start).  There might be a couple of very pro-active and pro-cycling officers behind Operation Close Pass, but that does not mean that West Midlands Police as a whole are any more effective at getting justice for cyclists than any other constabulary.

Avatar
zero_trooper replied to Richard D | 5 years ago
2 likes
Richard D wrote:
Simon E wrote:

3 points and £100 for hitting another vehicle and not stopping = getting off incredibly lightly. I bet West Midlands traffic cops' response would be much more effective.

How much would you like to bet?  Because I'd take the bet in a heartbeat.

West Mids Police sent the driver who clipped me during a similar close pass to a driver's education course.  Zero points on the licence (and nothing by way of an apology to me either).

And that only happened after I kicked up a stink.  Their first response was to say that as no collision had occurred (wrong), the driver had committed no offence (also wrong), and that there was insufficient evidence despite it being on video (so wrong it's hard to know where to start).  There might be a couple of very pro-active and pro-cycling officers behind Operation Close Pass, but that does not mean that West Midlands Police as a whole are any more effective at getting justice for cyclists than any other constabulary.

Unfortunate that you had to push this so hard yourself. However, a driver's education course isn't a bad result. The driver would have to had paid for the course themselves, probably had to take time off work and you never know, may have come out of it a better driver! I've done one (for speeding) and it was excellent and I really felt that I benefited from it.

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RoubaixCube | 5 years ago
0 likes

Is this £100 fine a victims surcharge by any chance?

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Leviathan | 5 years ago
7 likes

Collision happens at 0:04 seconds for those who want to skip forward to the juicy bit.

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leqin replied to Leviathan | 5 years ago
4 likes
Leviathan wrote:

Collision happens at 0:04 seconds for those who want to skip forward to the juicy bit.

Thanks... that saved me enough time to type this :.)

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brooksby | 5 years ago
4 likes

What this guy experienced is pretty much par for the course: in my experience people drive very badly through Easton in Gordano, Pill, and Ham Green (in the interests of full disclosure, I live there).

When the road curves by the Lodway Garage, people go over to the wrong side of the road so they don't have to slow down - amazing that there's not been a collision there.

The parish council wanted to bring in a 20mph limit through the villages (after all, the entire road is effectively access only, in that you'd only come through if you live there, or work there, or are visiting) but I think the idea has been shelved after howls of protest from the Pillites.

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