ajft wrote:Yes, that's right, "The 4wd failed to give way" -- because in Australia the overwhelming subconscious mentality is that the car did it, there's no responsibility on the person driving the car. Its nearly always "A car cut me off", "A car drove into me", "A car didnt' see me" or "if you don't have lights and dayglo vests and a helmet then the cars can't see you" -- it's not just a shortcut of speech, its a frame of mind that the car is the active entity, not the nominally in-control person driving it.
Exactly right. There seems to be a disconnect between "the driver" and "the vehicle" in a most reported cases and common speech in general. It would seem to be a method of abrogating responsibility for the drivers (or others) actions. Often you will here of an incident similar to this were the driver escapes charge (responsibility for their actions), qualified by the statement "Geez mate. What good is charging him going to do. He killed someone and will have to live with it his whole life. Isn't that punishment enough?"
This is borne out fairly convincingly in the death of Scott Peoples were the offending driver, despite deliberately misleading the police investigation, escaped prosecution and continued driving for eight months following the incident. Following prosecution and a $1200 fine he was allowed to continue to drive for a further three months prior to the three year suspension of his licence. Why?
I feel sorry the bloke driving the 4WD. And he will have to live with this for the rest of his life. But until drivers involved in this type of incident are held truly accountable, the attitudes of drivers to cyclists will not change.
My heatfelt condolences to the family of the deceased.