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Old 08-09-09, 09:53 PM   #25
Ratty's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Stockport
Posts: 597
Default Re: That Filtering & Insurance Letter.

As promised, here is a copy of the letter I submitted to my insurance and solicitor after the filtering accident detailed in my T-boned thread. I don’t know if the letter had any influence on the decision of the third party insurer to concede liability because I also had good witnesses. It is an up-date of the original letter in this thread and has been modified to reflect my own accident circumstance ( which was a car exiting a side street ) and also to include topical references to the most current version of the Highway Code at the time.

I hope you never need to use this letter and wish you all the best if you do.

Ref: - Accident ******

My Circumstances

I was slowly overtaking a stationary / slow moving line of traffic on the A**** ******* Road towards ***** after being diverted off the M**. My speed was approximately 10 to 15 mph and my headlights were on dipped beam. The conditions were very good being warm and bright and the road surface was dry and in good condition. I noticed a green **car** suddenly pull away from a side street on the left but I had no time to brake because I was already virtually in front of her as she started to move from stationary in the side road. I managed to swerve very slightly just as the **car** impacted the side of me and my bike. The impact was completely ‘side on’ with contact starting behind my front wheel, to my left side fairing, foot / footrest assembly and exhaust. This caused my foot injury.

I regained control of my motorcycle which was propelled onto the opposite carriageway, then braked and brought it to a controlled stop on the opposite kerb about 20 to 30 feet further on.

The **car** driven by Ms ****** came to a halt partially on the kerb almost opposite the side road she exited and pointing in the **town** direction.
Ms ******* came across as I tried to assess my condition and was very apologetic and repeatedly stated that she was sorry because she pulled straight out without looking after being flashed out by a car in the queue. As far as I can remember she continued to reiterate this in front of one or both witnesses when they came across to give me their details.

With reference to the circumstances of the accident, could I refer you to rule. 88 of the Highway Code in the section "Rules for Motorcyclists" which reads as follows:

Maneuvering. You should be aware of what is behind and to the sides before maneuvering. Look behind you; use mirrors if they are fitted. When in traffic queues look out for pedestrians crossing between vehicles and vehicles emerging from junctions or changing lanes. Position yourself so that drivers in front can see you in their mirrors. Additionally, when filtering in slow-moving traffic, take care and keep your speed low.
A number of important points arise from this rule.

1. Note the use of the word WHEN as emphasised in the rule. It does not say "Do not overtake traffic queues" (or words to that effect), or suggest that it is an inappropriate course of action to take. It is clearly not a prohibitive instruction. This clearly envisages that motorcyclists may, in the normal course of riding, overtake traffic queues.

2. I had already checked my mirrors and glanced behind to make sure nothing was overtaking the traffic queue already.

3. It was only the fact that I was progressing relatively slowly, in order to check for pedestrians who may be crossing between the vehicles making the accident much less serious than it would otherwise have been.

Before I move on, it is probably worth referring to the General rules for motorcyclists set out in rules 83 to 89. Again, I have reproduced these below.

On all journeys, the rider and pillion passenger on a motorcycle, scooter or moped MUST wear a protective helmet. This does not apply to a follower of the Sikh religion while wearing a turban. Helmets MUST comply with the Regulations and they MUST be fastened securely. Riders and passengers of motor tricycles and quadricycles, also called quadbikes, should also wear a protective helmet. Before each journey check that your helmet visor is clean and in good condition.
It is also advisable to wear eye protectors, which MUST comply with the Regulations. Scratched or poorly fitting eye protectors can limit your view when riding, particularly in bright sunshine and the hours of darkness. Consider wearing ear protection. Strong boots, gloves and suitable clothing may help to protect you if you are involved in a collision.]
Daylight riding. Make yourself as visible as possible from the side as well as the front and rear. You could wear a light or brightly coloured helmet and fluorescent clothing or strips. Dipped headlights, even in good daylight, may also make you more conspicuous. However, be aware that other vehicle drivers may still not have seen you, or judged your distance or speed correctly, especially at junctions.

You will note that:

1. I had complied with rule 83 / 84 by wearing substantial protective clothing, which again helped reduce the seriousness of the accident. My foot injury and therefore the capability to maintain control of the motorcycle would have been much worse if I was not as conscientious and experienced.

2. I had complied with rule 86 by using dipped headlights. I always ride with dipped headlights as it is considered good practice and safer to do so.

Accordingly, the only conclusion which may be drawn from the above is that I was riding my motorcycle safely and as envisaged by the Highway Code. I cannot, therefore, be to blame in any way for the accident.

Ms ****** Circumstances

I now turn to Ms *******’s driving manoeuvre.

I shall compare her manoeuvre to two fairly similar manoeuvres; setting off from rest as she was stationary and making a right turn.

Setting Off From Rest

This is governed by rule 159 of the General Rules for Using the Road. This is reproduced below:

159: Before moving off you should

use all mirrors to check the road is clear
look round to check the blind spots (the areas you are unable to see in the mirrors)
signal if necessary before moving out
look round for a final check.
Move off only when it is safe to do so.
Check the blind spot before moving off

It is quite clear that Ms ******* failed to undertake all, or more likely any, of the requirements given that my body nearly in front of her when she made the manoeuvre.

Take extra care at junctions. You should
Watch out for cyclists, motorcyclists, powered wheelchairs/mobility scooters and pedestrians as they are not always easy to see. Be aware that they may not have seen or heard you if you are approaching from behind
Watch out for pedestrians crossing a road into which you are turning. If they have started to cross they have priority, so give way
Watch out for long vehicles which may be turning at a junction ahead; they may have to use the whole width of the road to make the turn (see Rule 221)
Again, however, the emphasis of the first requirement is on observation. As set out above, Ms ******* failed to take this action.

Accordingly, the only verdict which can be reached from the above analysis of Ms *******’s manoeuvre is that it was undertaken without sufficient care and attention to myself and other road users.


Ms ******* was stationary and I took all reasonable care to overtake stationary vehicles, The car remained stationary so I proceeded to overtake. I checked before doing so. No checks carried out by Ms ******* before her manoeuvre as I approached and leaving me no chance to take appropriate avoiding action.

Ms ******* is young and and may lack experience, but this does not excuse her for not making the proper checks - what if I were a pedestrian or pedal cyclist? More substantial injuries could have been caused by her inattention.

As shown above, I have followed the road rules clearly and exactly and am in no way responsible for this accident. If Ms ******* had made all the checks required as shown above or been paying attention she would have been aware of my presence and not moved until I had passed, in which case this accident would not have occurred.

I trust this is sufficient to pass to her insurers.

Thanks Alan
"I can see Paradise by the SV's light"
TCX Competizione S boots saved my foot .

Last edited by Ratty; 08-09-09 at 10:01 PM.
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