Tag Archives: road rage

What To Do After A Car Hits You

Urban Velo published a succinct post today with 6 steps that you should take after being hit by a car.

1. If you are in pain, stay put. Don’t try to move. You could end up injuring yourself even more.
2. Call 9-1-1 or tell someone else to do it for you
3. Make sure to get the driver’s name, license plate, insurance info and contact info
4. Get a police report
5. Contact a lawyer
6. Contact your city councilperson and tell them your story and that you want safer cycling conditions in the city

After Nick Magruder was recently hit-and-run on Bonnie Brae on May 13th, he went through most of those steps.  I say most because to my knowledge he didn’t contact a council person and let them know what happened, but I definitely did.  In querying the Denton police department to obtain cyclist accident statistics, we learned that they were not keeping track of cyclist accidents, but they are now, since we asked.

On the topic of #3, I have previously failed to memorize license plates during traffic incidents, and now I regularly scan plates with my eyes just as practice.  It definitely hasn’t come naturally to me during the few unfortunate incidents I’ve had, like when a van on Hwy 77 stopped and the passenger threatened to get a gun and shoot me.  In situations like that, with adrenaline pumping, I simply never thought to memorize the license plate.  As a result, the (UNT) policeman was not inclined do anything.

Lesson learned: practice memorizing license plates, so you can do it when it counts.

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Gov Rick Perry Vetoes Safe Passing Bill

RIPSB488

In a move that shocked cyclists statewide, Texas Governor Rick Perry vetoed the Safe Passing bill, which added legal protection for cyclists, pedestrians, motorcyclists, construction workers, etc, by requiring a minimum passing distance by other larger vehicles.

Via KVUE in Austin:

The measure, SB 488, would have required drivers to give cyclists at least three feet of clearance when passing them on most highways. Other ‘vulnerable road users’ included in the bill were pedestrians, construction workers, tow truck operators, stranded motorists, motorcyclists and moped riders.

In his veto statement, Perry said many restrictions on motorists already exist in state law.

“While I am in favor of measures that make our roads safer for everyone, this bill contradicts much of the current statute and places the liability and responsibility on the operator of a motor vehicle when encountering one of these vulnerable road users,” Perry said in a statement.

“In addition, an operator of a motor vehicle is already subject to penalties when he or she is at fault for causing a collision or operating recklessly, whether it is against a ‘vulnerable user’ or not.”

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Austin Cyclist Shot In Back With BB

Brad Urry

The Austin On Two Wheels blog reports that Brad Urry finally got his story out on KVUE that he was shot in the back with pellet gun on May 1st.

I could sense that something wasn’t right,” said Brad Urry, a high-tech worker who rides his bicycle at least twice a week.

Urry said, two people in a light-blue Prius shot him in the back with a pellet gun and kept going.

The half inch deep wound barely missed his spine.

“When they went by me they scrunched down in the seat so that I couldn’t see anything but the top of their heads,” said Urry.  “I wanted to catch them to find out what did I do to deserve this?  Why would you do this to another person and create such a situation where somebody could literally get killed?” questioned Urry. He told KVUE he wants others to be aware of their surroundings.

“Just be cognizant, pay attention when you’re out there because it caught me by surprise,” he said. “I thought I was aware of everything that was going on around me and this caught me 100 percent by surprise. Nothing to provoke the shooting.”

On a similar note, I was waiting to cross University/380 on my commute home from work yesterday.  I was behind one car, both waiting to cross.  A white Dodge Ram truck turned into the lot, and instead of going straight into the lot, the truck insisted on traveling diagonal to cut across the turn-in, which is exactly where I stood with my bike.  They laid on the horn, and angrily motioned for me to move.  In years past, I might have stood my ground and dealt with escalation, but I know better now.  It’s not worth it.  Like Urry says, focus on being cognizant and writing down the plate numbers.  In the past, when occupants of a van on Hwy 77 threatened to get out a gun and kill me, I was too freaked out to note the license plate.  Don’t make that mistake if you have any hope of justice.

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