Cycling in the news 10 Oct to 16 Oct 2020

Source: The Australian (2020, October 12).

A Melbourne cyclist has posted footage to social media after being stopped by police and questioned about whether he was exercising or not. As reported by News.com.au, the man was riding through a parking lot filming a large group of police when private security and police officers stopped the cyclist to ask what he was doing. Although the man was told he was free to go after being questioned, users on social media criticised police actions as a gross overreach, with some going so far as to say Victoria had turned into a ‘police state’.

An upcoming coronial inquest into the death of a 35-year-old cyclist in 2017 has prompted calls from advocacy groups to make blind spot detection mandatory on trucks in Victoria. As The Age reported, Arzu Karakoc was killed while cycling through an intersection when the driver of a truck in the same lane turned left across her path, running her over, before leaving the scene. Although police later determined that the driver had been on his mobile phone at the time of the incident, no charges were ever laid in relation to her death. The driver maintains that he did not see Ms Karakoc and was not aware he had run someone over.   

On Thursday, a 27-year-old woman was hit by the driver of a car in Hindmarsh, South Australia. According to The Advertiser, the incident occurred at an intersection on a major road at around 8am. The victim had to be taken to Royal Adelaide Hospital to be treated for serious head injuries.

A county court in Geelong has accepted the guilty plea of an 81-year-old driver who was charged with dangerous driving causing serious injury after crashing into a cyclist last year. As The Geelong Advertiser reported, the 35-year-old victim was hit from behind by the driver causing life-threatening injuries, memory loss, and long-term brain damage. Despite evidence of driver negligence, the prosecution acknowledged that the perpetrators age and health meant he would likely leave court with only a fine.

In infrastructure news, a Sydney cyclist has lampooned Transport for NSW’s safety solution to a light pole placed in the middle of a cycleway near the Anzac Bridge. As The Australian reported, the local cyclist had complained about the pole on social media after colliding with it last month, causing serious cuts, scrapes and a possible cracked rib. This week he returned to the pole to find Transport NSW had simply painted a line around it, reducing the size of the bike lane to 50cm.

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