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View Poll Results: Would I be liable for damage to stop a car and contact police?

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  • Acting on anger with violence is always wrong

    6 46.15%
  • Pfft, Kicked his mirror? I would have punched "HIS" lights out

    3 23.08%
  • No jury would convict you

    2 15.38%
  • You'd be spending at least a couple sessions in anger mngt counseling

    5 38.46%
Multiple Choice Poll.
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Senior Member SteelCan's Avatar
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    Missed me my "_" that much. Got perty angry for a minute. Would I be liable?

    While returning home (solo) from a group ride yesterday, I was almost hit even though I was on the inner half of the shoulder.

    Without exaggerating, a bastard (with a wife(?) and two kids strapped in the back seat) couldn't have missed me by more than 2" AND possibly even less as my elbow went above his side view mirror. (I still don't know how I wasn't hit)
    When I say close, I can vividly recall the kid's wide-eyed expression as he peered thru the window as they went by.

    How it happened:
    Car in front of him was stopped with blinking turn signal at an intersection (with a traffic light) and the driver figured he could squeeze by/between us (car and me) at speed rather than having to slow down. (for 6feet until I cleared the stopped car)

    I read the posts here about these incidents. While I sympathize with those who get all worked-up, angry and looking for retribution, I typically tend to agree with the calmer voices that remind us to be thankful that you were not injured.

    I knew that, but for about a minute, I was incensed. I began sprinting because if I could have caught that car at the next light (he got a green), I would have kicked out his side view mirror to get him to stop. Then called the cops on my cell and had us hash out the ramifications.

    How bad would my liability have been?
    And would you do the same?

  2. #2
    powered by Racer Ex gsteinb's Avatar
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    Get therapy and figure out what forum stuff like this belongs in.

  3. #3
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    This isn't the Road bike raging subforum ?

  4. #4
    Senior Member SteelCan's Avatar
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    Oops. Should have posted in A&S.

  5. #5
    Dances With Cars TRaffic Jammer's Avatar
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    After the fact with kids in the car?... ah no.
    I would have moved out to cut off the potential buzz. A close pass is one thing but when they are trying to cut through an opening.... misjudging the car side of said opening means you get smashed upon an impact. Close the door on 'em for that 6 feet. Get in way early as to be predictive. The onus is on the overtaker to do so safely, and you are allowed to take the lane when you deem it necessary. There's no need for him to be on the shoulder AND not slowing down considering the traffic, (turning car and you) he's definitely entered "tool territory"

    Chances are the cops would sympathize with the family with the frightened children crying in the backseat of the car, and you'd be toast. Never ever when kids are in the car.

  6. #6
    Slow'n'Aero DrWJODonnell's Avatar
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    I have been hit by a passenger mirror before. rode up, knocked on the window, but he took off. got the license plate, make and model as well as a description of the car. Called police, they came, took my report, and did nothing.

    What can you do?

  7. #7
    starting pistol means war YMCA's Avatar
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    I've opened semi-truck doors on three occasions.
    I've broken a side window with my fist.
    I've been a fist fight with 4 gang-bangers on a suburban street corner in my cleats.

    I've had my fair share of close calls, but only the ones that were seriously on purpose, do I ever do anything about.

    Other times, I politely let them know they endangered my life with a very heavy vehicle.

    You want me to go to anger management? F*** off.

  8. #8
    bulletproof tiger ok_commuter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TRaffic Jammer View Post
    After the fact with kids in the car?... ah no.
    I would have moved out to cut off the potential buzz. A close pass is one thing but when they are trying to cut through an opening.... misjudging the car side of said opening means you get smashed upon an impact. Close the door on 'em for that 6 feet. Get in way early as to be predictive. The onus is on the overtaker to do so safely, and you are allowed to take the lane when you deem it necessary. There's no need for him to be on the shoulder AND not slowing down considering the traffic, (turning car and you) he's definitely entered "tool territory"

    Chances are the cops would sympathize with the family with the frightened children crying in the backseat of the car, and you'd be toast. Never ever when kids are in the car.
    This. Quit curb hugging and take your place in traffic when the situation warrants.
    sic

  9. #9
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelCan View Post
    How bad would my liability have been?
    You would have civil liability for the damage you caused to the mirror, as well as the possibility, albeit ulikely of punitive damages, for your intentional tort. And your exposure would not be covered by your insurance.

    You would also be guilty of various crimes such as destruction of property, assault, disturbing the peace.


    Worst case scenario for the driver, he get's a ticket.

    Worst case scenario for you, you go to Jail.

    If you broke off the mirror in the process of fending off the car that's one thing. If you intentionally retaliate after the fact that's another.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  10. #10
    . botto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gsteinb View Post
    Get therapy and figure out what forum stuff like this belongs in.

  11. #11
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelCan View Post
    And would you do the same?
    I would hope not.

    Closest situation I've had is rotating off the front of a paceline, truck comes along tries to pass, with oncoming traffic. There was really not much room to go anywhere.

    I started punching the side of the truck; One to get his attention that he was going to hit me, and two to maintain seperation from the truck.

    Policeman in the oncoming lane stops. We all think great, this guy in the truck is going to get what's coming.

    Despite the fact that I had a valid defense for striking the truck, and that the truck was in violation of a number of traffic regulations, I'm the one that catches hell from the police officer, and for a little bit I think the officer was considering arresting me.

    Lesson learned, breaking **** off cars is not a good idea.
    You could fall off a cliff and die.
    You could get lost and die.
    You could hit a tree and die.
    OR YOU COULD STAY HOME AND FALL OFF THE COUCH AND DIE.

  12. #12
    Burning Matches. ElJamoquio's Avatar
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    Damn it, I dropped my blue star.
    Reacting is mind candy; it requires no thought. Thinking is tedious.

    Bikeforums 'Group Buy': Kinlin Rims, Sapim/DT Spokes, Formula/Bitex Hubs


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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by ok_commuter View Post
    This. Quit curb hugging and take your place in traffic when the situation warrants.
    +1

    I move over when staying right allows drivers to consider squeezing past me in an unsafe way. The law usually says something about staying as far right as practicable. It's not practical to stay right if someone takes you out while squeezing past you.

    However, sometimes there isn't much you can do.

    I was riding pretty fast on the side of a wide open, 4 lane road (Pearl River, NY) with very few side streets or driveways, doing 30-32 mph, in a 40 mph speed limit zone (typical driving speed 45-50 mph). A car came up beside me - the passenger door was about even with me when suddenly the car turned right (i.e. into me). I slammed into the door while I jammed my bike right into the (playground) driveway. I briefly contemplated flipping myself over the hood since I could have done it without really hurting myself. But I decided that a less dramatic out would be sufficient.

    I never actually went down because I used the car as a brace. The car stopped. The driver, a woman with what seemed to be paper with directions in her mouth, started yelling at me for getting in the way. Her kid, in a baby seat, was in the back seat, wide eyed. I figure they were looking for the playground.

    I yelled at the driver, questioning why she thought turning right while I was next to her front door was acceptable. She claimed that she had already passed me, and I pointed out that her side view mirror hit my arm.

    A few seconds later the car behind the mom pulled around us and drove into the playground area.

    It was a police car, from that (very small) town, driven by a cop.

    I realized that if a cop doesn't care if I get hit by a car, then it's up to me to try and protect myself.

    However, assaulting someone (or their property) wouldn't be a good move. It's like the doctor in LA - I couldn't believe what the riders said to the doctor. Yes, he did something terrible, but their responses prior to the incident were indicative of how provocative such actions can be.

    **

    A long time ago a driver, an older woman, drove by, laying on her horn, waving a fist. My friend and I were riding single file so I thought her outburst was inappropriate. I sprinted after her, more to relieve frustration than anything else.

    Only thing was, she didn't drive very fast, and I actually caught her a minute or so later. She pulled over and rolled down her window. I rode up to the window, prepared to be a good bike ambassador, but wanting to point out the error of her ways.

    Woman: "What do you want?" (scared)
    Me: "I just wanted to ask why you honked your horn so much? We were single file, riding to the right, and we couldn't have moved over more."
    Woman: "Um.. I honked because I think it's great that you are doing something healthy like riding your bike."
    Me: "Oh, okay. Have a nice day."
    Woman: "You too." (relieved)

    Obviously she didn't honk because she thought it was nice we were riding. But I have a feeling that if I'd laid into her, it would have been counterproductive.

    Having related those two stories, sometimes you just know when things are bad news:
    http://sprinterdellacasa.blogspot.co...tooed-arm.html

    cdr

  14. #14
    Dances With Cars TRaffic Jammer's Avatar
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    Missed it by THAT much, chief.

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