Latest driver-cyclist death sentence joke

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  • Latest driver-cyclist death sentence joke
  • tjagain
    Member

    Its not an accident as she chose not to be paying attention or was driving whilst unfit for other reasons. she was found to be at fault – therefore its not an accident! It ws not deliberate no. However if the courts found her at fault then its not an accident.

    In an accident no one is at fault.

    As above – I always find it incredible the attitudes to car drivers on here. any collision is “an accident”. There is a reason why the police no longer use RTA but RTC.

    What I said, and you quoted, has nothing to do with my observation. I pay attention and I look at the road; I consciously try hard to do those things consistently and I believe that I’m “good” at performing the tasks. Whether I observe (ALL the right) things and then act appropriately is open to question and of course the person least likely to comment objectively on that would be me.

    I stand by my statement that things / incidents do not “come out of nowhere” and appear in front of me (and I think that is maybe quite a good indicator of the likelihood of being in a crash when looked at over an extended period). I do spout what you may consider to be shit on threads like this – particularly regarding inattention – but as said, I think I would hold myself to the “standards” and consequences I occasionally propose and so I take my own driving seriously. If things started taking me by surprise, I would be very concerned indeed.

    I’ve seen and known enough IAM and roadcraft **** in action to stop me from accepting such as any sort of guarantee, though something like an IAM course is what I’d like to see for people “involved” in a crash or exceeding some points threshold. Yes, for everyone but you have to start somewhere and those whose lapses are demonstrably long enough to have a crash are a good starting point.

    Yes, your observation is great and you can’t benefit from any training, but other people’s isn’t as good as yours and they would benefit. It’s a typical attitude and a *very* dangerous one.

    No doubt the day before she failed to see a cyclist this woman would have said exactly the same.

    even people on a bike forum

    Assuming we’re all being objective our presence on this forum should have no impact on our opinion. The fact you’re saying that makes me think that you think some of us might not being objective…

    bazzer
    Member

    “Yes, but as I said, that is a deliberately complex task. I wonder how many people could/did successfully count the passes, gorilla or not”

    And this is why your not as safe as you think. The tasks don’t have to be complex at all, they really don’t, there is plenty of evidence and experimentation to show this.

    Google task loading, maybe learn something about human cognitive ability that you didn’t know before.

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    Yes, your observation is great

    What I said, and you quoted, has nothing to do with my observation

    Try not to project.

    (I believe, subjectively) I’m “good” at being attentive and not taking my eyes off the road for many seconds at a time. My personal belief is that this is the minimum standard that we should all be held to.

    Do I have any evidence that at least my level of attentiveness is adequate? Only that I don’t find myself in the situation where easily perceptible and predictable hazards surpise me. Take it or leave it – it’s probably at least as valid as “I did an IAM course ten years ago”

    I don’t believe my driving to be perfect, nor do I accept your implication that my attitude (which is that driving is potentially dangerous and that I should therefore pay close attention) is *very dangerous*. What if I said I’d done an IAM course, this year – would you drop to your knees or what ?

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    bazzer, I’ve heard of task loading and I also know that there are high and low cognitive load tasks. Counting ball passes made by one of two intermingled passing groups, milling around in a tight space in a gym is, I believe, a higher load than the vast majority of driving situations.
    The other end of the scale might be “can you watch telly and drink a cup of tea at the same time”? Very few people would end up scalding their tits

    Premier Icon convert
    Subscriber

    Its not an accident as she chose not to be paying attention

    On what evidence are you basing that?

    cchris2lou
    Member

    It is a joke.

    Not paying attention whilst driving resulting in the death of another human being is not an excuse.

    Should never be allowed to drive again.

    FunkyDunc
    Member

    In an accident no one is at fault.

    I drove in to the back of another car at a roundabout a few years back. I thought they had pulled out, they hesitated and I drove in to the back of them. It was an accident, but I was at fault.

    Had it been a soft human rather than a metal car there could have been bigger consequences, but the law surly would have to treat both cases in the same way or the law becomes variable

    Counting ball passes made by one of two intermingled passing groups, milling around in a tight space in a gym is, I believe, a higher load than the vast majority of driving situations.
    The other end of the scale might be “can you watch telly and drink a cup of tea at the same time”?

    Of course if you miss something happening in the corner of a TV screen nobody get maimed or killed.

    The level of complacency in this thread is terrifying.

    There’s two viewpoints in this thread.

    – “What happend to this woman could happen to anyone including me. I need to work 10x harder to focus in future.”

    – “Unlike me this woman has unusually bad awareness and therefore must get heavier punishment.”

    The people taking the first viewpoint are closer to the truth and taking a far more useful attitude AFAIC.

    squadra
    Member

    I drove in to the back of another car at a roundabout a few years back. I thought they had pulled out, they hesitated and I drove in to the back of them. It was an accident, but I was at fault.

    Had it been a soft human rather than a metal car there could have been bigger consequences, but the law surly would have to treat both cases in the same way or the law becomes variable

    That is superficially similar- but really it is expected that a driver recognises vulnerable road users and acts appropriately. The consequences of hitting a soft human as compared to a metal car are blindingly obvious. So whilst most us will have been guilty of risking rear-ending a hesitant car at a roundabout because we were looking at the traffic flow it doesn’t follow that we would fail to be more cautious if following a cyclist.

    That is superficially similar- but really it is expected that a driver recognises vulnerable road users and acts appropriately. The consequences of hitting a soft human as compared to a metal car are blindingly obvious. So whilst most us will have been guilty of risking rear-ending a hesitant car at a roundabout because we were looking at the traffic flow it doesn’t follow that we would fail to be more cautious if following a cyclist.

    The evidence is *exactly* the opposite. We notice bigger dangers to us far more readily than we notice our danger to others. There’s literally a hierarchy order. When walking we spot everything, when we’re in a Van we spot lorries but cars and motorcycles less so, when we’re on a bike we notice cars and motorcycles, but pedestrians less so.

    kerley
    Member

    Had it been a soft human rather than a metal car there could have been bigger consequences, but the law surly would have to treat both cases in the same way or the law becomes variable

    Exactly. This is the bit that becomes hard to swallow when somebody is killed but not paying attention for a few seconds. The fact someone was killed is not relevant as that is not the thing being tried.

    poly
    Member

    frankconway
    On the face of it, another shit decision by the judiciary in cyclist injury/death incident.

    You can’t really blame the judiciary for following sentencing guidelines – if they don’t it will be appealed and overturned.

    I’m sorry, this wasn’t “a moment of inattention” this would have been a considerable time of just not looking where they were **** going.

    if that is true, and it may be, the prosecution should have adduced evidence to that effect. The judge said, “there was no dispute it fell into the lowest category”. She heard the evidence, her job is not to investigate or interrogate (that is not how the criminal legal systems work in the UK). If there was evidence on the gravity of the offence it was the prosecutors job to bring it to the court.

    I understand why people get so angry about sentencing, but consider for a moment, had the cyclist (and therefore the driver) been marginally luckier and not suffered a pulmonary embolism and died four days later. She would likely have been prosecuted just for careless driving, indeed some police forces may even have suggested a driving course as an alternative to prosecution. Were it not for the fact he died, she would almost certainly not have been banned, and likely would have had 3-4 pts as it was “at the lowest end” of the careless spectrum) and a few hundred pounds fine.

    I don’t think a custodial sentence would be unreasonable. Apparently the fear of killing someone while driving is not sufficient to make people act responsibly so perhaps the fear of some prison time would sharpen their focus more.

    I think your logic is flawed. Other than a few callous, twisted people I doubt many have made a conscious decision to drive irresponsibly, therefore the fear of prison time would be irrelevant (prison is a possible consequence anyway). To rationalise it they way you have you would need to imagine the driver thinking “I might kill him; oh well its likely only community service”. Even subconsciously that is not what happens. Realistically we all become a bit complacent and don’t expect to even have a no injury crash every time we get behind the wheel.

    Had she gone to jail the sentence would likely have been for 36 weeks only (the starting point for the next level up in the guidelines). Because we have the bizzare situation where people only serve half their sentence “inside” she would have been automatically out in 18 weeks. In fact as a 71 yr old with no previous offences, she would very likely have been eligible for release earlier than that on a tag for home detention curfew – perhaps spending as little as 9 weeks in prison. I wouldn’t want to spend 9 weeks in a prison, even a low security one like she would have ended up in – but I suspect anyone who thinks 18 month community order and a 12 month ban is not a disincentive for unintentionally causing a death also thinks 9 weeks in prison would be pretty cushy.

    Let’s not forget she seems to have pleaded Not Guilty – so the sentence is higher than it could have been…

    True, but in E&W the disqualification period is not subject to discount for an early plea. So the part that would have been discounted for an early guilty plea is the 18 month community order and 120 hours unpaid work (which everyone is ignoring).

    a massive amount of victim blaming.

    A total lack of understanding of the phrase victim blaming there – I haven’t seen anyone suggest Mr Holt’s contributed in anyway. Its not victim blaming to have a little empathy for someone who has made a mistake, even if that mistake has unintentionally resulted in loss of life.

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    Of course if you miss something happening in the corner of a TV screen nobody get maimed or killed.

    Similarly, if you tried driving whilst watching a video of some people and a gorilla in a gym, somebody very likely would get maimed or killed. Which artificially exaggerated example illustrating general points and not directly related to driving shall we discuss first, or shall we just accept that some tasks are more demanding than others ?

    There’s two viewpoints in this thread.

    – “What happened to this woman could happen to anyone including me. I need to work 10x harder to focus in future.”
    – “Unlike me this woman has unusually bad awareness and therefore must get heavier punishment.”

    Those aren’t mutually exclusive and although you’ve gone a bit OTT, it’s entirely possible to suspect that a driver who fails to avoid driving into a cyclist (at least under certain conditions) has unusually bad awareness.

    Nobody here is saying that they don’t feel a need either personally or for all drivers to focus – indeed my entire point is that I try VERY hard to focus as I feel that’s a minimum requirement. Somehow you manage to imply that I’ve no interest in it, or in learning from my experience and need a training course in order to develop an attitude that I already adopt. A course would very likely add to or at least challenge my “skills” but I’d be surprised if it would fundamentally alter my attitude.

    Focus and awareness are different things and, regardless, a sensible driver ought look for evidence that their awareness, observation and judgment are up to the task. My “evidence” is weak and circumstantial, yes, and the comments of an expert observer trump it in many ways but I would be aware that I was under observation and so might change my normal behaviour anyway. I’d also be highly unlikely to have the phone out, for example (or are we imagining that “advanced drivers” don’t ever do that?).

    So then, I wonder how should I measure awareness ? How often should this be repeated ?
    IAM observer on a ………ly basis ?

    You’re presumably dying to, so why not say what you’ve done to try 10x harder to focus ?
    How do you know it has delivered any measurable benefit and how often are you going to undergo objective assessment to maintain validation of this ?
    When will you repeat whatever process it was that improved you ?

    ————————————————————————————-

    Other than a few callous, twisted people I doubt many have made a conscious decision to drive irresponsibly

    Pretty much every time I’m on the road I see people using thier phones – reading & sending texts even, never mind just talking, handset to ear. Most of them make at least a minor attempt to conceal it, so they know it’s wrong. That is a deliberate choice to drive dangerously.

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Subscriber

    My guess is she won’t be back driving in 12months.

    Most likely, and at 71 even if she chose to how would she get on with modern testing?
    But yes (IMO) the ban should be longer/lifetime?

    a custodial sentence? I wouldn’t be against it.

    What would it achieve in this instance?
    The driver clearly feels remorse and guilt for an unintended action so you’d not be reforming/rehabilitating her. By removing her licence the risk she poses as a driver would be removed… So what is the benefit to society in her locking her up?

    So basically you’re just playing Russian roulette with other people’s lives.

    Yup that’s Human operated motorised transport for you… People will die, mostly due to the fallible meat sacks in control. Our justice system apportion blame and corrective action after the event, because that’s the least worst way for it to operate. By passing test and obtaining a licence to drive yes you get the right to drive a car but also gain a responsibility to pay attention, and not kill other people…

    Premier Icon DezB
    Subscriber

    Assuming we’re all being objective our presence on this forum should have no impact on our opinion. The fact you’re saying that makes me think that you think some of us might not being objective…

    The fact you typed this in response to what I said, says to me you’re just typing a lot of words to make yourself sound clever rather than discussing what the thread is about. But then I only read one of your posts.

    The driver will carry a burden of guilt for taking a life, accident or not. This will remain with her till she dies. Every cyclist she sees,whislt driving or not, will remind her of her actions and the outcome. No court penalty lasts till the day you day , or get alzeihmers and cant remember your kids faces.
    Do I agree with the sentancing. ??? Nope, prosecute every one who crashes , not just the ones whose crashes have a secondary bigger outcome.
    Longer driving bans for death by carelessness. Saying you were inattentive to me smacks of admitting driving with undue care , but causing death by undue care is not avavilable ( afaik )
    Prison? pointless waste of taxpayers money and a cell. Keep the cells for hardend crims or professional criminals. Little old ladies should pay with fines, community service, decent length driving bans 2 -3 years , reduced for taking lessons like speed awareness but I dont think there is one called ‘who not to hit on the highway’ . Mandatory re-test , eye tests , maybe even a medical . You have taken a life , there has to be serious cnsequences. Use a bow and arrow in your garden for some archery practise and the arrow misses the target , goes through a fence and kills someone , due to moments in attention, and there will be jail time. Use a car , then a little slap on the wrist is deemed suitable
    Juries made of a majorty of road cyclists would be a step forward, but they would be biased as it is alot more likely to be ‘one of us next time’

    Magistrates must be fustrated also, CPS prosecute to a level where the charge is most likely to result in a prosecution, as opposed to a higher charge that may lead to acquittal. I suspect alot of juries are made of people who dgas and want to get home to their family and facebook account so take the path of least resistance and go with the flow, rather than asking akward questions or seek clarity on points of law.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    If a driver killed another driver today, would you be posting on here about it?

    It probably has happened today and you don’t even know.

    she was found to be at fault – therefore its not an accident!

    Not this again. Look up ‘accident’ in the dictionary, it does not mean what you think it means.

    kerley
    Member

    It probably has happened today and you don’t even know.

    With an average of 4 or 5 deaths per day it has definitely happened.

    prosecute every one who crashes , not just the ones whose crashes have a secondary bigger outcome.

    Seems like a good approach.

    poly
    Member

    … I doubt many have made a conscious decision to drive irresponsibly

    Pretty much every time I’m on the road I see people using thier phones –….. That is a deliberate choice to drive dangerously.

    Yes, sorry irresponsibly was totally the wrong word (how many points do I get for operating a keyboard without due care and attention?). I mean a conscious decision to drive expecting to cause harm.

    poly
    Member


    Singletrackmind
    Nope, prosecute every one who crashes , not just the ones whose crashes have a secondary bigger outcome.

    I’d agree with that – and far more of the near misses too!

    Saying you were inattentive to me smacks of admitting driving with undue care , but causing death by undue care is not avavilable ( afaik )[/quote] It is the same offence: “A person who causes the death of another person by driving a mechanically propelled vehicle on a road or other public place without due care and attention, or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the road or place, is guilty of an offence.

    I dont think there is one called ‘who not to hit on the highway’ . [/quote] I believe they call it “what’s driving us”

    Juries made of a majorty of road cyclists would be a step forward, but they would be biased as it is alot more likely to be ‘one of us next time’

    Jury wasn’t the “problem” with this one…

    Magistrates must be fustrated also, CPS prosecute to a level where the charge is most likely to result in a prosecution, as opposed to a higher charge that may lead to acquittal. I suspect alot of juries are made of people who dgas and want to get home to their family and facebook account so take the path of least resistance and go with the flow, rather than asking akward questions or seek clarity on points of law.

    if there are jurours there are no magistrates. In the case of careless v dangerous, careless is an alternative charge anyway (so the jury or magistrates can decide only the lesser offence was achieved). The CPS often accept a guilty to the lower charge to avoid everyone the trauma, inconvenience, risk and expense of a trial. I think if you were determined to get the maximum penalty for every offence you’d find being a magistrate very frustrating; I assume the selection process is intended to look for people who are a bit more open minded than that though.

    At the risk of throwing petrol on the bonfire, having experience in this, I can tell you that ‘events’ are entirely unintentional but also entirely predictable. We can even quantify the frequency, we can quantify the measures that will make the event more it less likely. Most collisions are completely unintentional but totally predictable, therefore don’t fit the dictionary definition of accident. Which is partly why people are dropping accident. If you call it an accident it implies there is nothing you can do to predict, prevent or lower the probability of it occurring, which means that driver training, improving road design etc is pointless as it will do nothing to reduce ‘accidents’

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Pretty much every time I’m on the road I see people using thier phones –….. That is a deliberate choice to drive dangerously.

    No, it’s a choice to use their phone. People are in denial about the danger – they thing they are still being safe whilst using their phone (they are wrong of course). People rarely choose to do anything dangerous, they tend to overlook the danger.

    For example, on a smaller scale I thought I could move the cabinet in the spare room without dislodging all the junk on top of it. Of course I was wrong, but I still tried.

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    No, it’s a choice to use their phone. People are in denial about the danger

    They know it’s illegal, hence hiding it on their lap or whatever and bloody sheepish (or aggressively defensive, obvz) when they know they’ve been spotted. IMO they therefore know it’s dangerous even if they don’t expect it to actually result in a crash.

    My preferred “solution” would be for phones (or cars if feasible) to block signals when moving above 10mph – maybe unless on a train line

    The other thing that I would really like is to make a series of questions during a driving theory test to include (in every case) “which of the following is dangerous and which is illegal when driving ?” with a series of mandatory-pass options including talking on the telephone (handset and hands-free separately), texting, …
    That removes any doubt or legal wiggle from the driver and also educates juries which I think is probably more important until/unless we can get them off driving cases altogether

    Premier Icon Bez
    Subscriber

    Assuming we’re all being objective our presence on this forum should have no impact on our opinion.

    You’re confusing “being objective” with “sharing the same perspective”.

    One of the key issues in all this is that few people cycle on the roads and therefore few people anticipate those who do, few people understand the amount of dange a car poses to them, few people empathise with being in that environment, and few understand how little you can do to prevent someone in a car from failing to consider that you might be there and driving straight into you. And these people are few amongst not just people who drive, but also amongst people who investigate collisions, carry out prosecutions, sit on juries, apply sentencing, or create laws. To many of them, people on bicycles are just gorillas, it’s cars that they’ve been trained to look for.

    (Then again, that probably still applies even here, as there always seems to be a fair few people whose perspective of using bicycles on the road involves strapping them to a car and driving very rapidly to the nearest trail centre 😉 )

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    They know it’s illegal, hence hiding it on their lap or whatever and bloody sheepish (or aggressively defensive, obvz) when they know they’ve been spotted. IMO they therefore know it’s dangerous

    No, they know it’s against the rules, but they don’t equate the rules with actual physical danger. People are not rational beings, not by a long way.

    I’ve sat down with my Mrs a few years ago and told her not to pursue any legal action should I be killed on the roads – it’s not worth the time when she would be grieving (hopefully), time and time again it’s been judged that killing cyclists is acceptable.

    I also gave up doing 3000miles a year commuting as I knew it was going to kill me from anger/stress/an accident.

    Premier Icon scaredypants
    Subscriber

    I’ve sat down with my Mrs a few years ago and told her not to pursue any legal action should I be killed on the roads – it’s not worth the time

    I’ve suggested to mine that she spend a small amount instead on having the **** kneecapped

    No, they know it’s against the rules, but they don’t equate the rules with actual physical danger. People are not rational beings, not by a long way.

    Well put. People are more aware of the probability and penalties of being caught doing it and fined than they are of the probability of being involved in an incident and the consequences of that.

    kcr
    Member

    Exactly. This is the bit that becomes hard to swallow when somebody is killed but not paying attention for a few seconds. The fact someone was killed is not relevant as that is not the thing being tried.

    Fair enough, take the occurrence of death or personal injury out of the argument, but lets have much tougher penalties for people who are responsible for causing any sort of road traffic incident as a result of careless driving, instead of shrugging and saying “accidents happen”.
    Run down a kid and kill them or run into the back of a car at a roundabout; let’s treat both of those severely if the driver is culpable because their driving was below an acceptable standard.

    I really think we could do with a bit more fear of the consequences of getting things wrong while driving a car.

    Its not an accident as she chose not to be paying attention or was driving whilst unfit for other reasons. she was found to be at fault – therefore its not an accident! It ws not deliberate no. However if the courts found her at fault then its not an accident.

    In an accident no one is at fault.

    Wrong. If she chose not to be paying attention then it was deliberate then it’s Manslaughter or murder. And your definition of an accident is wrong. There is always ‘fault’ in every single accident…someone somewhere always drops the ball, and in 99.99999999% of accidents there is always more than one compounding contributing factor that has lead to the end result.

    Also it could also wrong that she ‘chose’ not to pay attention and genuinely didn’t see the cyclist…..it has been scientifically proven that the human brain does not fully comprehend the outside world and picks and chooses what it focuses on and fills in the gaps – basically creating an illusion of the outside world and not necessarily a true representation of it. This happens more prevalently in situations where the brain is being bombarded with alot of information in a fast moving and quickly changing environment…just like driving on a busy road for example. This scientific understanding has been implemented in Aircraft cockpit design over the last 30 years or so when it was concluded that the cause of alot of air accidents were pilots becoming too easily overloaded in vital situations and missing vital bits of information and making the wrong decisions leading to accidents…so the introduction of modernised and simplified cockpits, fly by wire and more automated systems to reduce pilot workload has been key in drastically improving the safety of air travel. So it is perfectly possible, and indeed likely, that she genuinely might not have seen the cyclist. Impossible to know in this particular case without knowing the details…it could be she was doing her lipstick in the rear view mirror, or texting or something..but she might have been focusing on a pedestrian crossing the road, or the big articulated lorry speeding in her direction or some other risk and genuinely didn’t see the cyclist.

    So easy to demonise when you read a sensationalised newspaper report specifically designed to trigger people’s anger and rage. It was a tragic accident and it’s important to understand the circumstances in a non-emotional or biased way and learn from and ideally act on the findings…which is why in accident blackspots speed limits are lowered, junctions re-designed etc. which is effective in reducing accident rates in those areas. Punitive punishments being dished out doesn’t serve to be effective in doing anything, especially reducing the rate of accidents involving cyclists, which is ultimately what we all want.

    I really think we could do with a bit more fear of the consequences of getting things wrong while driving a car.

    Or maybe better to educate drivers, and cyclists for that matter, and prevent the accidents in the first place? Fear of consequence doesn’t seem to have an impact in any other area…people still commit murder even though it commands a life sentence…having a death sentence doesn’t seem to deter murderers any more…And if they eased up the sentences for murder do you really think more people would commit murder? How low would the sentence for murder be before you decided to commit murder? I suspect you would never decide to commit murder even if it had a really low sentence.

    If people are doing these things deliberately then they think they’ll never get caught so the punishment is irrelevant. The rest of us already think we’re taking all the necessary steps to not get things wrong because the vast majority of people are decent and don’t go out in their car with the intention of ignoring cyclists and deliberately mowing them down.
    If I were to accidentally knock down and kill a cyclist, or pedestrian or cause an accident where someone died do you really think that locking me up for a few years and banning me from driving is going to be a worse punishment than the guilt and regret that I would be carrying around with me for the rest of my life? I wouldn’t want to get back in to a car again so the punishment would be useless.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Good post Wobbli.

    hols2
    Member

    There’s two viewpoints in this thread.

    – “What happend to this woman could happen to anyone including me. I need to work 10x harder to focus in future.”

    – “Unlike me this woman has unusually bad awareness and therefore must get heavier punishment.”

    The people taking the first viewpoint are closer to the truth and taking a far more useful attitude AFAIC.

    This.

    edlong
    Member

    This is NOT an accident. an accident is unforeseen and unpreventable.

    For the millionth **** time, that is completely and utterly wrong. An accident is unintended, there is no requirement in the definition of the word for it to be either unforeseen, nor unforeseeable, nor unpreventable, nor unavoidable. You’re confusing “accidents” with “unavoidable accidents”.

    If you think that all accidents are by definition unforeseeable and unpreventable, ask yourself why the government bother spending good money on the Air Accident Investigation Branch?

    However if the courts found her at fault then its not an accident.

    In an accident no one is at fault.

    As above – I always find it incredible the attitudes to car drivers on here. any collision is “an accident”. There is a reason why the police no longer use RTA but RTC.

    You do spout some illogical shite. The court can find someone at fault for something without finding that they acted with intent. In an accident, someone is always at fault, although not necessarily the people directly involved (e.g. the people that designed something badly). Someone earlier in the thread provided the definition from the Oxford English Dictionary. Citing the police as a linguistic authority is like quoting Donald Trump on women’s rights.

    Accidents are unintentional. Unless caused by something like a meteorite falling from the sky, someone will always be “at fault” for it happening, although in many cases that responsibility won’t be of a level or nature that criminal culpability is relevant.

    Coming at it from another direction, studies have been done that show humans make on average 12 mistakes every hour. Most have little to no consequence to the point you may not even notice them but they happen.

    Punishing near misses, in itself, is a stupid idea. It goes against the grain of the so-called ‘no blame culture’ where you can self report near misses so that they can be better understood without fear of reprisal. I had an incident at work recently where a coworker started walking in front of a forklift I was driving right as I set off. I couldn’t see him as he was obscured by my masts and I had already looked around them before I moved. I just never registered the fact he had disappeared. Luckily I was barely moving and quickly realised something was wrong but not what exactly. That’s in an industrial context but as pointed out AIB, MIB and HSE all investigate similar accidents and take appropriate action.

    Driving is not as easy as some folk seem to be pretending it is. You have constant stimulus around you, watching opposing traffic, upcoming hazards, potential hazards, potholes, drivers behind and side roads. It is a lot to deal with and to pretend otherwise is just daft.

    kcr
    Member

    do you really think that locking me up for a few years and banning me from driving is going to be a worse punishment than the guilt and regret that I would be carrying around with me for the rest of my life?

    I know nothing about you, so I would not presume to make any comment on how you would feel in that situation.

    I know there are people out there who do not treat the risk of careless driving seriously enough, because I’ve experienced the consequences first hand, and the people involved made it very clear to me that knocking me off my bike (on a cycle path) was no big deal. One of the occupants of the car was annoyed that she might be late for work.
    I’m not sure that someone like that is receptive to driver education, or feels much discomfort due to guilt, but I do think the real chance of losing a licence for a significant length of time might be a deterrent.

    hols2
    Member

    I do think the real chance of losing a licence for a significant length of time might be a deterrent.

    Yes, deterrence is a reasonable consideration in sentencing. But, in this particular case, the outrage seems to be over punishment (a moral issue), not deterrence (a pragmatic issue). We have a gut instinct that wrongdoers should be punished to set the moral balance of the universe back on an even keel (and make not mistake, there are plenty of people I’d like to see hung, drawn, and quartered). In this particular case, it looks like an elderly lady made a simple mistake and an unlucky cyclist paid the price. The driver doesn’t fit the cartoon image of a murderous monster, so it’s not clear how severe punishment will serve a moral purpose. That leaves the pragmatic issue of deterrence, so the question is whether sentencing this particular old lady to a longer punishment will deter people who drive like ****S just because they can’t be bothered. I think that’s unlikely, so I don’t find the deterrence argument persuasive in this particular instance.

    Driving is not as easy as some folk seem to be pretending it is. You have constant stimulus around you, watching opposing traffic, upcoming hazards, potential hazards, potholes, drivers behind and side roads. It is a lot to deal with and to pretend otherwise is just daft.

    This is really the issue to me. The criteria for getting a driver’s license is very low, and that’s not going to change because modern society is based around everyone driving places. Some people are going to make careless mistakes and innocent people are going to get killed. Throwing an old lady into prison isn’t the solution to a systemic problem.

    kerley
    Member

    The criteria for getting a driver’s license is very low,

    Don’t agree, I think the test is pretty good. The fact that you can just forget it all the day after passing is the problem. If you had an examiner sitting next to you on every drive with ability to remove your license if your standard wasn’t good enough I am sure everyones driving would be at a much higher standard.

    Some really persuasive arguments on here, some of which have actually changed my opinion.

    This will never happen, but mandatory re-testing for everyone and a driving ban when you cause an accident like this seem most appropriate.

    Age shouldn’t come into it. You can have 40 year olds who are incapable of driving and 70 year olds who can drive fine.

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