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Crash: My fault or not?(6 posts)

Crash: My fault or not?2ride
Jul 26, 2002 4:25 PM
Yesterday in the RAMROD event (154 mile, 10K climing event in Washington) I may of been responsible for a crash of some 6 to 8 riders (luckily no one was seriously hurt and I believe they all continued the ride). Here are the details:

I was riding behind a couple of other riders when one of them lost a water bottle after hitting a bump going over a bridge. I looked back to signal a truck following me that I was stopping to pick up the bottle - he apparently saw the bottle in the road since he slowed to a stop well before my position. I stopped to pick up the bottle and a few seconds later I heard a group of riders skid into the back of the truck. I feel like an idiot for stopping to pick up the bottle and creating this chain reaction. However, several other riders said it wasn't my fault and the riders who crashed should have noticed the stopped truck.

Next time I'll wait to survey the situation better before I stop and hold up traffic. Sorry to those that took the spill.
re: Crash: My fault or not?tempeteKerouak
Jul 26, 2002 4:49 PM
According to driving regulation, it can never be your fault ... You know that pretty much; anyone hitting you from behind is at fault unless they are stopped and you back into them...

You hold you own steering right?

I hold mine.

Ride on in peace, man.
Jul 26, 2002 5:00 PM
It started with the bottle. Actually the bump in the road.
If I were to ride into the back of a truck...biknben
Jul 26, 2002 6:05 PM
I'd only be blaming myself for not paying closer attention.

Looking behind you to survey the situation is a good idea but you can't control everything.

Ultimately, it is the rider's responsibility to be able to control their speed. I doubt there was anything you could have done different.
Sounds familiarTypeOne
Jul 26, 2002 11:07 PM
Whew...I was in a long paceline in RAMROD and lost a water bottle at a bridge pretty early on, so I read your post and thought I might be the guy to blame here.
But based on your details about the crash and the truck, I realize it couldn't have been me. I pulled off to the right, circled back when the coast was clear and picked up the bottle. And I found a 2nd bottle there that belonged to someone else!
Did you peel right (to shoulder) first?jtolleson
Jul 27, 2002 9:00 AM
These things happen, so I'm not looking to arm-chair second-guess after the fact.

But generally a rider's choice to stop for any reason should simply not involve traffic in any way; peel right off the road, signal first (or say "slowing!" and pull over if riders are on your wheel). Wait for traffic to clear, do your thing.

But the truck driver may have overreacted, and it shows your a guy of character for even thinking about how you could have done it differently.

As for the rider in back theory...

In a crowded fast century two years ago the rider in front of me decided to stop dead in his tracks, in the road, unannounced. I plowed him pretty good. I fell all over myself apologizing (I was the rider in back, after all) but after further thinking it seems to me he certainly screwed up also. These things can happen fast and are hard to figure.