Monday, 28 January 2008

Sun blind is no excuse

From the SMH today:

A 72-year-old Sydney man was knocked unconscious when a group of cyclists, who were blinded by the morning sun, slammed into him.

The man was walking along the verge of the M4 motorway, in Sydney's west, about 6.30am today when the accident occurred, an NRMA Careflight spokesman said.

"[The] man was walking beside the motorway when he was struck by several bicycle riders ... who were blinded by the morning sun," the spokesman said.

"The man was rendered unconscious for a short time and suffered head lacerations, and was left confused and suffering concussion."

The cyclists were described as "shaken but otherwise OK".

Ok, the pedestrian was a complete dick for walking on the verge of the M4, but if you can't see where you are going, then you should be going slower than normal. It's just common sense. Imagine the mess if these guys had cycled into the back of a truck that had pulled over to change a flat.

Still, it is a nice reminder to pedestrians what happens when you walk into the path of a cyclist. It happens to me all the time in the city. I'll be zipping down the middle of a lane when one or more pedestrians will cross against the light right in front of me. Most will have a mobile phone or blackberry glued to their ear, and haven't really had a good look at where they are going. I have a couple of close calls every week. Last week, a bloke stepped off the footpath right in front of me. I swerved, but was close enough to him to actually go under his umbrella at the front (it was raining). That was a close call.

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