Mark is in a difficult legal position. He is making an unusual and illegal move, so his duty of care increases. But the driver, also making an unusual manoeuvre, still owes Mark a duty of care.

The driver has a duty to signal his manoeuvre and to ensure that his signal is seen and acted upon before he moves. Mark’s riding is below the standards of a careful motorcyclist, but his manoeuvre is not unforeseeable.

Some case law says that Mark would be wholly to blame, but trial judges analyse the circumstances of each case before them. If the trial judge finds that the car driver should have seen Mark, had he looked from the correct position at the crown of the road, then the likely split is equal blame. Without the keep left bollard and double white line, Mark would most likely be found blameless.

Andrew Dalton

Bike Magazine

August 2010