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papagolf
Help!

Was involved in a RTA on tuesday.
Basic outlines as follows:
Weather: Absolutley chucking it down.
I was joining the A34 at Wash Common, the slip road is a tight (approx 270 degree) left hand bend. As the slip road straightens out it runs parallel to tha a34, at that point I noticed another vehicle on the slip road. I checked my blindspot to see if I could safely merge, there was a lorry in the near side lane that was overtaking me, but after that it was clear to merge. As the lorry passed me my windscreen was covered in spray, reducing my visibilty. As my screen cleared I realised that the other vehicle was stationary, I tried to stop but failed sad.gif

The other vehicle, as much as I can remember, had no lights on, was not showing any brake lights or indicators. The passenger (a driving examiner) stated that the driver was stationary with the handbrake on.

Because of this the police want to interview me for DWDCA which has obviously worried me tremendously. Can anyone offer any advice?
DW190
The words:

"I don't wish to say anything until I have had the chance to seek legal advice".

Consult the legal department of your insurer.
volvo4life
QUOTE (papagolf)
Help!
Because of this the police want to interview me for DWDCA which has obviously worried me tremendously. Can anyone offer any advice?


Firstly - don't get to worried about the interview - they're after the facts. Take someone with you, not a solicitor but a trusted friend, maybe have the examiner who was with you there as well. If you are cautioned (which you probably will be) stick to the facts and answer questions with yes / no / I don't know / I cannot say kind of responses. Don't give opinion, just facts. At the end of the interview if you feel you haven't been able to state your point of view say that, and you should be given the opportunity to do so.

Other than that, good luck!
davleigh
I would agree, seek legal advice immediately.
davleigh
Sorry, just missed Volvo4life's reply - I understood you to mean that the examiner was in the car you hit; if so, not a good idea to ask him to go with you to a police interview.
volvo4life
QUOTE (davleigh)
Sorry, just missed Volvo4life's reply - I understood you to mean that the examiner was in the car you hit; if so, not a good idea to ask him to go with you to a police interview.


Yes - my misread, I thought the examiner was with the OP...

Bad idea...
papagolf
QUOTE (volvo4life)
QUOTE (papagolf)
Help!
Because of this the police want to interview me for DWDCA which has obviously worried me tremendously. Can anyone offer any advice?


Firstly - don't get to worried about the interview - they're after the facts. Take someone with you, not a solicitor but a trusted friend, maybe have the examiner who was with you there as well. If you are cautioned (which you probably will be) stick to the facts and answer questions with yes / no / I don't know / I cannot say kind of responses. Don't give opinion, just facts. At the end of the interview if you feel you haven't been able to state your point of view say that, and you should be given the opportunity to do so.

Other than that, good luck!


The examiner was in the other car!
The officer that wants to interview me is coming to my house, I've not been requested to go to a police station. I will try to arrange to have a trusted friend there with me.
davleigh
I checked my blindspot to see if I could safely merge

Sorry to sound brutal - but you failed; had you actually checked to see if it was safe to merge you would have seen a stationary vehicle in front of you and acted accordingly, particularly in view of the weather conditions. You did not and hit a parked car - and you ask how to exculpate yourself ?

I thought that this forum was for judicial process not bad driving?
papagolf
QUOTE (davleigh)
I checked my blindspot to see if I could safely merge

Sorry to sound brutal - but you failed; had you actually checked to see if it was safe to merge you would have seen a stationary vehicle in front of you and acted accordingly, particularly in view of the weather conditions. You did not and hit a parked car - and you ask how to exculpate yourself ?

I thought that this forum was for judicial process not bad driving?


My god, I must have missed the part where it said only people that may have not done what has been accused of them may post here.

I asked for advice on what I should do, I didn't give the full blow by blow account, just an overview of what happened. Having never been in a position where I honestly feel that I made a mistake and that it may have serious repocussions on my driving life.
DW190
QUOTE (davleigh)
I checked my blindspot to see if I could safely merge

Sorry to sound brutal - but you failed; had you actually checked to see if it was safe to merge you would have seen a stationary vehicle in front of you and acted accordingly, particularly in view of the weather conditions. You did not and hit a parked car - and you ask how to exculpate yourself ?

I thought that this forum was for judicial process not bad driving?


Come on Dave, have you never made a mistake or took your eyes of the road for a sec. I dont think you read into this to well.

IMO papagolf was on a slip road and checking the blind spot to the side of his vehicle when the car in front stopped. It sounds like a learner in front stopped and applied the h/brake.

Papagolf,

The police wanting to interview you means they are wanting you to say something to incriminate yourself. The car in front cant say anything other than we were hit from behind. If you dont say anything because you have been advised not to. They will find it difficult to gather evidence of DWDC&A as the people in the car in front are not independant witnesses. Unless the police have some independants they are relying on you to give them the evidence. Say nothing and if you have the facility to record what they say record it without their knowledge.
papagolf
QUOTE (DW190)
QUOTE (davleigh)
I checked my blindspot to see if I could safely merge

Sorry to sound brutal - but you failed; had you actually checked to see if it was safe to merge you would have seen a stationary vehicle in front of you and acted accordingly, particularly in view of the weather conditions. You did not and hit a parked car - and you ask how to exculpate yourself ?

I thought that this forum was for judicial process not bad driving?


Come on Dave, have you never made a mistake or took your eyes of the road for a sec. I dont think you read into this to well.

IMO papagolf was on a slip road and checking the blind spot to the side of his vehicle when the car in front stopped. It sounds like a learner in front stopped and applied the h/brake.

Papagolf,

The police wanting to interview you means they are wanting you to say something to incriminate yourself. The car in front cant say anything other than we were hit from behind. If you dont say anything because you have been advised not to. They will find it difficult to gather evidence of DWDC&A as the people in the car in front are not independant witnesses. Unless the police have some independants they are relying on you to give them the evidence. Say nothing and if you have the facility to record what they say record it without their knowledge.


Ok, so If I go down the route of "I've been advised to say nothing" then surely that is not going to help? From what I understand DWDC&A is very difficult to prove. The examiner has already told me he thought I was driving too fast, so I'm sure he has mentioned that to the police. What sort of attitude are the police going to take if I say nothing? What would be the likely outcome?
OU812
QUOTE (papagolf)
Ok, so If I go down the route of "I've been advised to say nothing" then surely that is not going to help? From what I understand DWDC&A is very difficult to prove. The examiner has already told me he thought I was driving too fast, so I'm sure he has mentioned that to the police. What sort of attitude are the police going to take if I say nothing? What would be the likely outcome?


Of course the other guy will say you were driving too fast, but speed isnt the debate here and the damage to both cars will be an indicatr of your speed if it were needed. It sounds to me like the other guy is trying to leverage his position as an examiner to your detriment.

Depending on the speed limit there and given the road conditions you state it sounds like the other guy is actually the problem for causing a hazard (why didnt he get the car out of the traffic lane?, why no hazard lights on? - he should know better after all!)

Might be worse asking the police how you can help them charge him for this, and if they say they arent investigating him (as well) ask them why the hell not!

Just my opinion though
Rosewell
QUOTE (OU812)
It sounds to me like the other guy is trying to leverage his position as an examiner to your detriment.

That has already been done; who do you think will be believed?

QUOTE (OU812)
Depending on the speed limit there and given the road conditions you state it sounds like the other guy is actually the problem for causing a hazard (why didnt he get the car out of the traffic lane?, why no hazard lights on? - he should know better after all!)

Complete and utter twaddle I would not recommend you say this, unless you want to look a complete [you fill in the depletive].

OU812, You can not be serious. Fact of life - Hit another car up the arse you are in the wrong, why? The view is either; too fast; too close; not paying attention or; a combination of all or any of the three.

icon_question.gif Unless..... Was the parked car on a Clearway? icon_question.gif
papagolf
QUOTE (Rosewell)
QUOTE (OU812)
It sounds to me like the other guy is trying to leverage his position as an examiner to your detriment.

That has already been done; who do you think will be believed?

QUOTE (OU812)
Depending on the speed limit there and given the road conditions you state it sounds like the other guy is actually the problem for causing a hazard (why didnt he get the car out of the traffic lane?, why no hazard lights on? - he should know better after all!)

Complete and utter twaddle I would not recommend you say this, unless you want to look a complete [you fill in the depletive].

OU812, You can not be serious. Fact of life - Hit another car up the arse you are in the wrong, why? The view is either; too fast; too close; not paying attention or; a combination of all or any of the three.

icon_question.gif Unless..... Was the parked car on a Clearway? icon_question.gif


I don't beleive it is a clearway, but will check. I wouldn't go down the route of trying to hoist the blame onto them.
The road is NSL, as for an indicator of damage, it was a square impact and neither of my airbags were tripped. There were superficial scratches to the other vehicle, with mine taking most of the damage. Again it was mainly superficial, new bonnet, intercoooler, bumper and driver's wing.
Impact speed was less than 15 mph (checked the speedo when I realised I wasn't going to stop in time)

The other driver was actually on their driving test and had previously failed at the junction that accident happened at for pulling onto the carriage way when it was unsafe to do so. On this occasion she decided to park until she had a perfectly safe gap. Unfortunately, from my point of view, there was no indication she had stopped, ie: no brake lights, no indicators. I made the incorrect assumption that she was merging into the gap infront of the lorry that I was going to merge behind.
Rosewell
QUOTE (papagolf)
... from my point of view, there was no indication she had stopped....

Except the fact that she was stationary, of course.
QUOTE (papagolf)
I made the incorrect assumption that she was merging into the gap infront of the lorry that I was going to merge behind.

Easy to do and also happens on roundabouts all the time.

The damage sounds slightly more than superficial. I wouldn't mention you had time to look at the speedo. More that you had already slowed to [whatever] MPH to negotiate the bend and to filter.
Regards,
DW190
papagolf
The decision is yours.

But it may harm your defence if you dont say something now which you later rely on in court.

What can you rely on in court?
Nothing you run up its arse. Clearway or not, the car could have stopped for an emergency. It could have broken down. You didn't know at the time.

Anything you say may be given against you in court!
Nowt said = Nowt Against
papagolf
QUOTE (Rosewell)
QUOTE (papagolf)
... from my point of view, there was no indication she had stopped....

Except the fact that she was stationary, of course.

Apart from that smile.gif

QUOTE (papagolf)
I made the incorrect assumption that she was merging into the gap infront of the lorry that I was going to merge behind.


QUOTE (Rosewell)
Easy to do and also happens on roundabouts all the time.

The damage sounds slightly more than superficial.
Regards,


That's what has got to me more than anything, it was a mistake, if I was driving too fast/taking silly chances then it would be a fair cop, but I wasn't which is why I'm asking for advice. As for the damage, unfortunately the materials used in the construction of the front end of my car are lightweight ally and can't be straightened which is why it sounds worse than it is icon_cry.gif
g_attrill
If she was stopped and waiting for a gap then it would have been correct to apply the handbrake - this is so that if you are hit from behind (!) your handbrake stops you being propelled into danger (ie. the carriageway). If as you say a lorry was in the nearside lane then it's understandable that a leaner could be inexperienced at judging whether it is safe to merge.

Gareth
davleigh
I would recommend contacting John Josephs http://www.turner-coulston.co.uk/contacts.htm

He has helped me and I am sure will be able to advise you.
TonyOut
IMHO, you can argue that although an accident occured, you were not necessarily driving without due care and attention.

I would be inclined to give a blow by blow account, making sure how you performed all your normal merging checks and all appeared fine. The fact that a car was PARKED on a slip road in atrocious weather is not something that you would expect. An examiner should know better. This is why you use the footbrake, to give warning to a following vehicle that you are stopped/stopping.

You saw the vehicle, but were unable to stop. It was an accident that occured, but not through a lack of attention.

I was advised by a serving inspector that in an interview it is important to mention something along the lines of "I was driving safely and at no point did my attention wander" As long as you give a good account of how come the other vehicle came out of nowhere, you should be ok.

If not, every incident where a vehicle meets an inanimate object would be DWDCA.

Worked for me in similar, but worse situation.
viper
I would advise you to write a letter explaining what happened if you wish and leave it at that. If they want to interview you just tell them you’re not interested you have put it in writing. Unless they are prepared to arrest you if so do a no comment. Basically they interview you to try and get you to incriminate yourself. If you say nothing then this is not possible.
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