Catching up on my millions of saved-for-later google reader items, I was stopped by this press release advertising truck cams. The provider of the cameras is boasting that one caught a near miss between their client Sibley Material Movements’ truck and a cyclist, which showed the truck driver to be “not at fault”. Watch it full screen. There are a few simple facts that can be ascertained from the video.
The video shows the truck driving along a typical two-lane two-way road with oncoming traffic at a little over 40 mph and then braking in the final seconds close behind a cyclist who was moving across the lane to make a right turn. The video is sadly too low resolution and wide-angle to see if and how the cyclist checked behind them and signalled.
What one can see is that the cyclist was always in the lane. The cyclist is described as having “pulled out”, but this merely refers to the preparation for the right turn. There is no suggestion or evidence that the cyclist was not always in that lane ahead of the truck. There is no way to enter the road from the left shown in the video, and the cyclist is there in the distance for the duration of the clip. This is, remember, a two-lane two-way road, with oncoming traffic.
Which leaves a question for Sibley Material Movements, who boast that the video proves their driver was in no way at fault and that the truck was “being driven safely”: what was the driver planning to do had the cyclist not “pulled out”? Given that this is a two-lane two-way road with oncoming traffic occupying the opposite lane, and given that the cyclist was always there ahead in the truck’s lane, and given that the truck was approaching the cyclist at a higher speed than the cyclist was travelling right up until those final seconds, what was the driver’s intended speed and position in the road at the time where they are instead shown honking their horn in the video?
Given that we can not turn back time and replay things in this hypothetical changed situation, and given that there is no legal definition of “safely”, it is impossible to say that the driver would not have proceeded “safely”. I’m simply curious to know how, and how the video proves it.
Given the nature of the situation, the Jack of Kent comment rules will have to apply to this post.