SMIDSY The old 'Sorry Mate, I Didn't See You' excuse

The common lament of the car driver, surveying the Kawasaki-shaped dent in his door, and the smoking wreckage of your nice, new machine, “Sorry mate, I didn’t see you!”

Motorcycles are less than one-third the width of a car and hence very easy to miss, eg. when waiting at a junction for a clear gap to emerge.  My client in this case was riding on a country A-road, approaching a junction on his left, where there was a family saloon waiting to turn right.  There was no other traffic around, but still the driver managed to completely miss the sight of a bike approaching from his right, and started to move forward just as our rider was about to pass the mouth of the junction.  Despite a violent swerve and equally frantic braking, collision was inevitable.  Fortunately, our client escaped with moderate injuries- a broken wrist and dislocated shoulder.  All very unpleasant, but it could have been a lot, lot worse.  To add insult to injury, there was no evidence whatsoever that he had been going above the speed limit and engineer’s examination of the bike confirmed his protestations that he had the headlight on. Thus, he was not to blame at all- it was all down to the driver, who admitted he simply hadn’t seen the bike. 

We recovered over £10,000 for the biker’s injuries, as well as getting back his loss of earnings, his damaged leathers and helmet, and the excess on his bike policy.