An irritating article. Though Greenwood's injuries and medical costs are serious, rego is a rich response upon which to frame her story into a news article. 

What about her criminal compensation when they find the cyclist guilt of neg driving? What about reforming the MAA to cover cycling incidents? What about not getting all worked up about incredibly rare ped-cyclist collisions in the first place (noting that the only similar incident the newspaper could find was from 2002!)

And finally what about balanced coverage? Where is the response from an appropriate bicycle advocacy group?

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As Cycle stated on their facebook page "41 pedestrians killed in 2014 by motor vehicles in NSW alone". The article is marginaly more balanced than it would be if it appeared in the Terror. The thing is Christine Forster is putting her hand up to be a candidate for the legislative council (the upper house) next year, she will be up there with Duncan Gay etc. She may also have an impact on policies etc. 

If I/a friend/a family member etc was hit by a cyclist and suffered similar injuries under the same conditions (i.e. the cyclist was at fault) and were out of pocket for medical expenses I would probably be wanting to claim them from somewhere.

However, this ultimately becomes an argument that everyone should have compulsory liability insurance - I could be on a bike and a pedestrian walks out into my path without look and causes similar injuries to me.

I do not see why they other option was not suing the cyclist? This would seem the obvious course of action. Do we have a lawyer in the house...?

She can sue the cyclist, but the issue with having $15,000 of dental bills combined with time off work, is that the legal system requires money as well, that will largely go down the drain if the defendant has no assets.


I agree Paul. There's a lot of talk about the cyclist's guilt. I heard segments of a TV interview with the injured women who said she had memory loss. So I guess she's not a good witness. Anyway, it's as you say best to let the courts decide.

The real story here is (in my opinion) that a person can sustain serious injuries and not be covered under publicly funded emergency care programs. This is in my view evil.


"Like the vast majority of NSW cyclists, according to data from Bicycle NSW, the offender did not have third party or public liability insurance."

This statement is simply not true. All members of cycling clubs and BNSW have public liability insurance as do about half of people with home contents policies which cover PL anywhere in Australia. NRMA is a good example here. My guess is that just over half of the cyclists in NSW have PL insurance.

A far better solution would be to implement a government backed "no fault" accident compensation scheme that covers everyone, similar to the scheme that operates in New Zealand.

But if we had a 100% coverage no-fault scheme what we we do with all those lawyers. No-fault accident schemes have been discussed in Australia for the last 50+ years but as lawyers make up the bulk of our parliamentary "leaders" the proposals go nowhere and we have a patch work of coverage which always leaves many gaps. If you can pin some " negligence" on someone with insurance you might get millions but if you can't then you get nothing but charity, not very just? With the billions proposed for the NDIS and the bulk of accident claims covered by motor vehicle schemes the cost of 100% coverage might not be all that great and paid for in savings in lawyers fees perhaps.

The cost of cycling PL insurance as part of club/association memberships is very small, less than $25 a year sa far as I can work out so increasing income tax by 50 cents a week seems like a small cost to cover 100% of the population for 100% of the time or perhaps half the number of politics in federal & state parliaments and this would cover the cost ( without effecting the quality of representation I am sure)

The point of a government backed scheme is that it would cover pedestrians as well as cyclists, something the Harold Scrubby never seems keen to acknowledge. The cost would be small and certainly less than the administration costs of registration and compulsory insurance.

In NZ it's levied in various ways including on payroll similarly to the way Medicare is here, and on the basis of your primary occupation. I remember looking at it years ago and crop duster pilots paid the highest levy, these days it looks like it's professional sports people. Accountants on the other had pay about 1/50th of their sports star heroes.

There is also a levy on fuel of $0.07-0.10/l, and another as part of your rego, based on vehicle crash risk data.

Yeah, it's troubling. Those graphic pictures, the hysterical tone, the huckster politicians and good ol' Scruby shamelessly leveraging the incident for all its worth. SMH: Sydney's second tabloid.

Another thing to consider is that this happened weeks ago and the cyclist is yet to be charged, let alone had the opportunity to put his side of the story forward. This is a contestable case, yet we only hear from one side, some time after the event -- so there's no excuse for not reporting all sides. Classic tabloid baiting tactics.

My guess would be the reason this story ran at all was only because the victim was prepared to flash her busted teeth for the camera and gave them a pic of her bloodied swollen face in hospital. Plus they could rely on the usual suspects to amp up the "controversy" adding colour to what is essentially a non-story.

Furthermore, this passage doesn't withstand even moderate scrutiny;

"Just as her foot hit the bitumen, a cyclist ran a red light and collided with her".

It's emotionally descriptive language, but I'm at a loss to understand just what exactly it means and one wonders how the writer came across this info and whether it was verified by other independent sources?

I'm sure the victim is entitled to feel aggrieved, but a week before Xmas, after a "celebratory dinner" (what, no drinks?), negotiating an intersection with "LOOK>" stenciled at every pedestrian crossing;,151.168344,21.14z?hl=en-au

...well, you have to think if perhaps she had exercised a little more caution, she might have avoided this extremely rare type of accident, even if the cyclist was grievously at fault.

The big story for us, though, is that the SMH has sunk to these depths. There's no mainstream media left, it would seem, that can cover cycling issues with integrity and intelligence.

I don't really find it that troubling, and personally I think you've got an equal dose of emotive language in your reply.  I'm not going to pick your reply apart, but honestly runs waaaaaay to close to victim blaming for my liking.

Its 99% an article to remind cyclists that responsibility comes with momentum, and since we unfortunately have a great deal of shared infrastructure, its kind of important that the realization comes for the population of cyclists.

However close to victim blaming my post may run, Jason, it's nothing compared to the article's assertions.

The link I provided didn't work properly, it was supposed to take you to a Google street view of the intersection where you'd see eight pedestrian crossing points. Without knowing which crossing point he's talking about, I find it quite impossible to understand what the writer means by the 'cyclist ran a red the instant the victim's foot hit the bitumen', but that's just a case of crap writing. Far more important is the question of what that was based on? Just on the victim's word or the word of independent witnesses? That's not just crap writing, it's appalling journalism and everyone should be troubled about that -- the once great SMH actually considers this acceptable?

Finally, a "news" article isn't supposed to 'remind cyclists of their responsibilities' or deliver any other moral lessons, it's supposed to report the news dispassionately, truthfully and without fear or favour. As quaint as those words may sound, the only alternative seems to be this sort of deliberately provocative trash designed to generate controversy placing the SMH at the centre of civic debates -- as outlined by John H, below.

It's a cheap low act. Cyclists seem like the last minority group in existence where this sort of bigotry and persecution is condoned. Can you imagine the outcry if this sort tabloid torment was inflicted on an ethnic group or gays?

A couple of times a year the telegraph's anti-cycling crusade makes their front page, having started down the same path with this article, I wonder how long it'll be before we see the same on a SMH front page?

Very troubling indeed.


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