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Determining "fault" by the PD doesn't include finding out the "training" of each driver, although the rule of thumb is to consider each to be an "average" driver.


The hypothetical doesn't include the woman's speed backing, AND doesn't describe any obstructions, parked vehicles, shrubs/trees, or time of day/night. Any of this could contribute to her being at fault.



Unless there was a "drag-racing" witnessed, or reckless driving witnessed, , Bellevue PD got it right because it is the responsibility of the driver backing up to ONLY back out when it is safe. Its her responsibility to look and determine if she can back out safely by looking far enough on each side to avoid being a hazard to oncoming traffic.


Measuring the skid length, determining the co-efficient of friction of the pavement, and the extent of damage to both vehicles will only give a minimum approximation of speed, but will not be an "exact" speed.


AZGL1800, , that is some good looking stone-work on your driveway wall, , ,I'm guessing the mail-driver "blocks" the driveway and walks down 20' or so and puts the mail in your mailbox. Those RxR tracks are definitely an issue too. STAY SAFE WHEN EXITING!!


EDITED: The following post (badMonk) has a point, , ,I "qualify" my comments with the phrase,, , "If this happened in MY state, , , ,"
 

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Having experience with a P.D. in Colo. The party backing up would be cited for unsafe backing. However if the rider or driver of the car was seriously injured or killed the Officer would call in a Traffic Accident Technician/Investigator (Unit) to do more than just a simple diagram and measurements. Skid marks for instance may establish a minimum speed using the coefficient of friction based on the vehicle weight, in this case the motorcycle, along with the drag factor of the road. In the absence of skid marks, gouge marks in the pavement can be used to help determine speed as can debris distance from the point of impact. The investigation may not change who is cited but may well supply the car drivers insurance co. with additional information to mitigate the car drivers (insurance co's.) financial responsibility. That, along with the reports from the insurance co's highly trained investigators and reconstruction experts may well be used to exonerate the driver of the car from all responsibility, both civil and criminal.



Of course if only minor or no injuries are sustained there would be much less investigation. And if the driver of the MC admitted how fast he was going he's twice a fool.



Disclaimer; There is more to it than I've patience to type out, and although I have 32 years of experience I was only in traffic for a few years a long time ago. But I have played a cop on TV and I've stayed at a Holiday Inn express at least a half dozen times.
 

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As much as it really a sad thing to admit, I treat all other road users as certifiable morons. I take my own safety very seriously. In all circumstances, I ride cautiously and try extremely hard to be aware of all potentially lethal circumstances. I leave gaps between me and the road user in front of me, ànd keep an eye out for loopies travelling too close to my safe zone. It may sound like a tedious way to ride but after a while it becomes second nature and you can still proceed in a relaxed manner. I wrote an old K75LT off a few years back when riding a narrow sealed road in New Zealand's south island. Exiting a single lane bridge, I accelerated away and hit a diesel patch on the road. One of the most terrifying things I have ever experienced, was sliding down the middle of the road with traffic moving either side of me going in both directions while watching my beautiful bike bouncing down the side of the road with various it's and pieces flying off it.
Broke three ribs and felt sorry for myself. Rented a car, drove to the nearest airport. Flew home and licked my wounds for three years. Bought a sports car with the insurance money. It was fun for a while but got back into bikes again.
At the end of the day,if you or another road user gets badly hurt, fault can be irrelevant. The best solution is....don't have accidents. That is why I ride the way I do.

Not always a successful solution though, the fickle finger of fate can really irritate your haemarh hemmarhoi hemaroid err piles when it gets stuck up you.

Safe riding to all

Mark
New Zealand
 

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Mark Bardell
you and I are on the same page...


I thought that I was being "proactive" when a semi T-boned me out of the blue.


what I did not allow for, was him jamming on his brakes so hard, the ABS on his right rear tractor tire failed, and that steered the truck 90° to the left....


I was following him a full 100 feet back, and in the HOV lane, he was in the #1 lane next to me.


and that put him directly across in front of me on my HOV lane..... I lost six months of work,
and never have regained my memory fully... and never will be able to accommodate big changes in ambient temperatures. if it is over 85°F it is time for me to find an Air Conditioned space, and right now.


I now keep an ice chest on a trailer hitch rack, with ice water and a Cooling Vest....
if I get to sweating, have to stop and pull on that ice cold vest...
 

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Late to this one, but thought why not reply. It's still a good one.
This is to garner opinion and discussion, only.

The scene:

A motorcyclist, riding through a neighborhood on a surface street and a young woman backing out of her driveway, on a errand to the grocery store.

The cyclist is traveling double the posted 25mph speed limit and the woman, giving a quick glance, both directions, backs out into his path. Never having seen him.

He panics, slams on the rear brake and skids into the right rear fender of the car.

Who was at fault?
Easy enough to prove the backing up if it mattered.
Assuming I can prove the speed, like maybe the rider survives long enough to admit to 2X the limit ... then I write the MC rider for reckless driving and exchange driver / reg / ins. info for car driver & MC rider. If the MC rider departs the jurisdiction of the Commonwealth via death before I got it wrote, then there was no stroke. Here, the driver of any vehicle traveling at an unlawful speed forfeits any right-of-way which he might otherwise have. Driver includes rider if on a motorcycle which is a motor vehicle. and for the limit to be, this happened on a public roadway. BT&DT.
Hypothetically I agree with you, but unless the bike rider admits to doubling the speed limit it is impossible to prove.
As a reconstructionist for over 20 years of my career, I learned to keep looking. There's flips, falls, vaults, drag tests, etc … and any witnesses to look at / for.

One day, I got called to work a fatal, MC rider had come down off the interstate exit ramp at 65-70 into a 45 zone (well marked too, and familiar to locals) with businesses (restaurants, motels, gas stations) … witnesses had followed him off the Interstate onto the exit ramp, but they slowed some as he sped on ahead ... was a car coming out of a motel parking lot located a few hundred feet past the merge of the exit ramp to the through roadway, still in the 45 zone. MC left a couple hundred feet of skid, hit car, rider's brain bucket 1/2 helmet went another couple hundred feet on past the car. There was more, but it doesn't matter, was not the lady's fault.
 

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When ever I back up I go extremely slow. I call it "inch it away" I told my wife and kids back then about it.
If I dont see the road I give the other rider/driver the opportunity to blow the horn and give me the finger. It happens in parking lots when I cannot see left and right and I back up blindly.
In one occasion I was the other guy ,I pulled out of my parking space and proceeded towards the exit . There were cars in front of me and in the back waiting for the final exit from the parking lot
A car from the left row start pulling out. I gently taped the horn to warn her. It didnt matter she kept going . Then I used the horn for a bit longer times. No success. She kept on coming. When she was like 4 ft away I laid on the horn and to my surprise she wouldn't stop for another foot or two. Finally she stoped and pulled back in her spot with"sorry I didnt see you" My horn must have been continually on for at least 4-5 seconds
 

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Train horns are actually illegal to have on a motor vehicle here. We would catch them on a toad's pick up truck often enough, usually mounted under the bed between frame rails and they'd put the spare in the bed or not have one …. and on tractor trailers usually mounted just behind the cab.

Never knew of a set on a car, they take a bit of room.
 

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Dang!

When we got the trike, it had two sets of Rivco Air Horns on it, hurt our ears to use it, even with helmets on, so I removed one set. I've thought about putting the second set under the rear facing rearward or under the trailer facing back. I have a trucker that goes by on I-81 and he must have a cousin near by because he sounds his every time, I would not want that noise that close to me.

Train horns are huge and have a very distinct tone too which is why outlawed on public roadways. That way, when heard, the person knows a train is near and as we all know, trains don't stop so well.

You won't believe this, but years ago I was working a wreck on the parking lot of White's Truck Stop at Raphine. Heard what I figured was a trucker blow train horns out on I-81. Few minutes later I got a message to check another wreck actually on I-81 at the 205mm SB, White's is off the 205 exit. Well, I hurried up, drove up and got on the interstate and looked around. There was a car had pulled through the crossover north of the exit to go back because the driver missed his exit he said, but I think he pulled in there to nap. He said he was stopped (a violation in itself just pulling into the crossover, once you miss an exit you just committed to the next exit at least), then he heard a train coming and thought there was maybe train tracks in the median, so he just floored the accelerator. His car shot out of the crossover and straight across the SB lanes into a small bank on the west side of the interstate. Didn't hurt him bad, but sure wrecked his car. I knew he told the truth about the train because I heard the horns too and I was near a mile away in a busy noisy truck filled parking lot. He was lucky he didn't get killed.
 

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I have a set of air horns from a '50s B-61 Mack truck's cab roof, have an air valve and pull chain that hung in cab still attached. I put a adapter in the air inlet to hook to shop air, LOUD is a word. They are just maybe 18 or 20 or so inches long. As loud as they are, they are nothing like a train horn set. Got the chrome bull dog hood ornament too. They (horns) would fit under hood of my '77 F150 and mount nicely on the left front fender apron, mount a vacuum operated compressor & tank, run chain into cab under dash. Just thinking, they ain't train horns after all. I once considered mounting the chrome bull dog on hood too, but some low life self loather would just steal it.

Alternatively, I could mount them on top of my shop roof and then use them to signal my wife (like with two shorts and a long maybe?) that it's near super time when she's mowing? Already have two bigger compressors and a smaller one so it'd be easy to do.
Maybe that wouldn't work so well, huh? :D
 
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