A driver has today been acquitted of dangerous driving following a close and fast pass of a cyclist in Hounslow.
Personal injury lawyer Martin Porter, who has posted a statement on his blog, pursued the case with the support of Cyclists’ Defence Fund after the Metropolitan Police declined to prosecute. Video evidence showed Aslan Kayardi, a driving instructor, passing closely and at high speed: 51-57mph according to the investigator’s report, in a 30mph limit.
In addition to the video evidence, Porter provided GPS and heart rate data which indicated a raised heart rate immediately following the incident—a sign of the intuitive fear response that such passes cause, even in experienced riders.
The CPS guidelines for prosecution of dangerous driving state that “examples of circumstances that are likely to be characterised as dangerous driving [include] failing to have a proper and safe regard for vulnerable road users such as cyclists [and] speed which is particularly inappropriate for the prevailing road or traffic conditions.”
These guidelines are derived from case law but contemporary juries—and arguably the CPS itself—appear to rarely if ever take such stances, even where a serious collision results and/or where clear violation of other road laws occurs.