It’s a very misguided belief that crashes are somehow acceptable if something went wrong ‘suddenly,’ on the road ahead.
Writing this as a retired traffic patrol police officer who has dealt with and investigated countless crashes, I couldn’t even tell you how many times I’ve been at a crash scene and had drivers tell me:
“It wasn’t my fault. Suddenly they [drove/walked/ran/cycled] right out in front of me!”
The attached video shows how to reduce a senseless and completely avoidable type of crash that can badly injure or even kill cyclists, in something known as “dooring.” Do what’s known as “the Dutch reach!”
Of course, bicyclists can also help themselves by always wearing cycle helmets and remaining alert, undistracted and observant.
The latest “THINK!” advert gives a small but important insight into the proper use of observations when driving.
Far too many drivers simply gaze ahead of their vehicle while driving without actually noticing everything they should and being alert to all the things that potentially could go wrong. Worse than that, many drivers literally do just gaze at the back of the vehicle they are following, reliant on the brake lights of that lead vehicle to trigger a response in themselves. But either way, drivers who do these things are throwing away a lot of safety.