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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    2

    Default Failure to Yield as a Cause for an Accident

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: Texas

    3 bicyclists riding down the right lane of a 4 lane divided road, daylight no traffic. A school bus at the upcoming intersection (her road has a stop sign, ours does not) pulls into our path when we are around 15 ft from the bus traveling at 22 mph. The driver sees us and stops blocking 90% of our lane. In order to stop a bicycle at that speed at that close a distance, you are going over the bars unless you want to eat the side of a bus. So the first two riders go over the bars onto the road impacting each other, but thru heroic self preserving effort, avoid actually impacting the bus. There are damages and minor injuries. I do not know if the driver was cited for failure to yield.

    Who is at fault?

    Did she cause the wreck or is it our fault since we managed to avoid hitting her despite her Sh#$%y driving. I mean technically I was forced to lose control of my vehicle to avoid hitting her in my lane. You cannot stop a bicycle in that short distance. You can only chose between pavement or bus.

    Where should this go? I contact her insurance company and discuss my damages?

    Thanks in advance for any helpful information!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Was Failure to Yield a Cause for This Accident

    You need to learn how to make an emergency turn.

    • You first momentarily steer towards the object you are trying to avoid. (That makes you lean in the opposite direction to keep your balance.) You then steer into the lean.
    • You use your brakes before or after the emergency turn, not during the turn. You also bring your pedal up as you lean into the turn to avoid catching the pavement with your pedal.

    Practice that at slower speeds and, as you improve, at faster speeds. That way, the next time a bus crosses your path, you have a very high probability of avoiding hitting it or going over your handlebars.

    If you have a claim for damages, try making a claim with the bus company's insurance.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Was Failure to Yield a Cause for This Accident

    That is a very bold statement. Let me throw some math at you real quick.

    22 mph is 32.2 feet per second. So 15 feet is 1/2 of a second to--

    1. see a vehicle start to move into your lane (one that you already looked at and decided was not a threat because it stopped and shows no intent to pull out)

    2. react to this threat.

    And you are saying the best answer is to swerve into another lane to avoid this?

    I guess I should go back and add step 1.5 where you look back over your left shoulder to see if the other lane you are going to serve into is or is not occupied by a hummer that will then flatten you in the middle of your "emergency turn".

    Not trying to insult you here at all...but I have been riding/racing road, track, and mountain bikes for more than 20 years on 3 different continents. As a living I fly high performance military jets. So my hand eye coordination and bike handling skills are better than most. I have had hundreds of people try to run me over the years.

    So trust me when I say we did all that could be done and this had the best possible outcome.

    Update--- the driver was not cited, but the narrative states that she pulled out in front of us and the insurance company says it will pay our damages.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Was Failure to Yield a Cause for This Accident

    I'm saying that you need to learn how to do an emergency turn. The fact that you don't even have slight familiarity with the concept only serves to reinforce my point. Claiming ignorance of basic bike safety skills over twenty years of riding? No, that doesn't impress me even slightly. But if you like going over your handlebars, it's your life (and limb).

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