Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

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Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Feijoa » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:03 pm

This was the front page of the Herald today: Mum asked to pay up after son, 12, hit by car
The mother of a 12-year-old boy hit by a car as he walked home from school is being chased for damages by the driver's insurance company.

The insurance company says it is following standard procedure, and as she is legally responsible for her child, she must pay up.


The interesting part was the reason why he (she) is liable:
While Mike is allowed to scooter home, he has to get off and walk it across any streets. He usually crosses at the top of Loloma Drive but on the day he was hit he was down the road a few metres and crossed from between two cars.
...
She contacted the police, who said that because Mike crossed the road in the wrong place he caused the collision.


The caption on the printed copy says the collision took place near the Loloma Dr-Bucklands Beach Rd intersection. On google maps there don't appear to be any pedestrian crossings in this area - not even a refuge island on the intersection. Does anyone know why technically he was at fault for crossing there, or would it be pure reckless or careless behaviour? How about the traffic engineers who provided no facilities for pedestrian safety despite this being right next to a school - surely they are more valid targets as trained professionals than a kid?
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Hamish O » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:09 pm

Feijoa wrote:The caption on the printed copy says the collision took place near the Loloma Dr-Bucklands Beach Rd intersection. On google maps there don't appear to be any pedestrian crossings in this area - not even a refuge island on the intersection.

There is actually a light controlled crossing in that imagery you have linked to, right outside the school, here, so he may well have technically been jaywalking.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Feijoa » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:32 pm

Hamish O wrote:There is actually a light controlled crossing in that imagery you have linked to, right outside the school, here, so he may well have technically been jaywalking.


He was crossing Loloma Dr. The crossing is over Bucklands Beach Rd so not of any use.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Hamish O » Wed Jun 05, 2013 9:37 pm

Feijoa wrote:He was crossing Loloma Dr. The crossing is over Bucklands Beach Rd so not of any use.

Right, I don't think the article made that clear. In that case the nearest crossing was over 200m away, so where exactly was it not the 'wrong place' for him to cross?
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Feijoa » Wed Jun 05, 2013 10:08 pm

Hamish O wrote:Right, I don't think the article made that clear. In that case the nearest crossing was over 200m away, so where exactly was it not the 'wrong place' for him to cross?


My thoughts exactly - it makes it sound like the Police believe he should cross right on the intersection despite it lacking any design for pedestrians. The mother should fight NZI, the publicity won't have hurt her chances.

Third paragraph BTW.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Hamish O » Wed Jun 05, 2013 10:11 pm

Feijoa wrote:My thoughts exactly - it makes it sound like the Police believe he should cross right on the intersection despite it lacking any design for pedestrians.

Yeah, that's just silly, as it's much more dangerous normally to cross at an intersection, where cars come from multiple directions instead of just two.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby richard » Wed Jun 05, 2013 10:47 pm

I don't know why this story even made the news!

If there's a chance of a recovery the insurer always sends a "without prejudice" hold liable letter which as the insurer suggested you take to your insurer and the companies then sort out liability and recovery from one another or with motor claims apply the 'knock for knock agreement". This was purely to get the other party to refer the matter to their insurer, particularly important with a non motor recovery because few realise their house insurance covers such an event. If the other insurer denied liability in this case, which would be probable, it would be pointless the insurer pursuing the claim and I suspect recovery would be written off.

I reiterate, news reports clearly stated NZI suggested the lady refer the matter to her insurer. We had a case recently where a neighbour's teenage daughter was fooling around and a piece of concrete came over our fence and cracked our french door glass. The neighbour reported it to their insurer after receiving a letter from our insurer and the whole issue was sorted with no report to any newspaper!! Anybody in the family normally residing at home would be covered by the Public Liability section of the policy, children included
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Bryce » Wed Jun 05, 2013 11:23 pm

I believe the police are absolutely wrong in their judgement in this case. There is no jaywalking law in NZ unless crossing within 25 (?)m of zebra or lights. It is up to the motorist to be able to identify potential hazards and adjust their speed accordingly.

On another note, 30kmh zones in residential areas will reduce these potential incidents by a large margin.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby geoff_184 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:02 am

Bryce wrote:It is up to the motorist to be able to identify potential hazards and adjust their speed accordingly.


How did this incident occur though? Obviously one party was where they shouldn't be, so which one was it?
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Nick R » Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:29 am

The kid was crossing between two stopped cars. That's something I do often myself, but what is the legality of it (not placing moral blame anywhere here, but in these cases the law is the law).
I should still listen to Doloras.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby geoff_184 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:37 am

Nick R wrote:The kid was crossing between two stopped cars.


So how did an impact occur?
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Nick R » Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:50 am

The article didn't say.
I should still listen to Doloras.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby richard » Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:08 pm

It's difficult to make any judgement of liability from the media reports and you can't without the true facts backed up by independent witnesses.

There are very few accidents where one party is solely at fault, even with the stopping within the clear distance rule there can be some contributory negligence. Frankly the whole story was full of omissions and gave a bias to the mother's story and from the reports that's all it was a news story to get paper sales not a portrayal of the facts and evidence.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Nick R » Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:38 pm

I must say it has the flavor of a media beat up, "poor mum charged by evil insurance corporation after child hit on scooter".
I should still listen to Doloras.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby locost_bryan » Thu Jun 06, 2013 2:20 pm

What the Road Code has to say :-

... for pedestrians Information for pedestrians
If you have to cross the road between parked vehicles, move out as far as the headlight of a parked car nearest the traffic, then check for moving vehicles and wait for a gap before crossing the road.

... for drivers Sharing the road with pedestrians
Be careful when driving past parked vehicles. Pedestrians may walk out without warning.
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby vworp » Thu Jun 06, 2013 2:40 pm

I'd be interested to know exactly how much damage a scooter did to this car that warranted a ruddy insurance claim?!
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby locost_bryan » Thu Jun 06, 2013 3:17 pm

vworp wrote:I'd be interested to know exactly how much damage a scooter did to this car that warranted a ruddy insurance claim?!

$1569 - quite a bit, it would seem. Metal frame scooters are fairly solid, especially if hit at 30-50kmh. A broken headlight on a modern car can easily set you back more than $500, similar amount to repair and repaint a dented/scratched guard, possibly replace a cracked windscreen... If the scooter went under the car - $1,000 for a new bumper, $300 for a tyre...
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby duddley » Thu Jun 06, 2013 5:03 pm

Didn't the insurance company claim the scooter hit the car and thats why the mother was liable.
Duddley for Mayor!!!
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby Bryce » Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:14 pm

And: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/artic ... d=10888692

Car was travelling at 20 km/h. If, as a driver, you don't make eye contact, assume they will walk out. You are in charge of the 1,500+ kg motor vehicle that can and will kill someone. It is the drivers responsibility to keep an eye on the road ahead. I say this as a driver of 28 years, a mechanic and as someone who loves cars (and bikes and walking).
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Re: Crossing the road 'in the wrong place'

Postby geoff_184 » Fri Jun 07, 2013 9:15 am

Bryce wrote:It is the drivers responsibility to keep an eye on the road ahead.


Witin reason, yes. But a motorists cannot be expected to avoid a pedestrian, cyclist or scooter that suddenly comes into their path within the stopping distance of the vehicle. The law is very clear on how pedestrians, cyclists etc are to behave on the roading network, which if followed, will ensure no collision takes place. Even on a marked pedestrian crossing, users are not allowed to dash across suddenly or without warning. As you say, a 1.5 tonne car is dangerous, so the above people must take the utmost care when entering the roadway.
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