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Thread: Broken chevrons

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    Really Bored tenbears's Avatar
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    Default Broken chevrons


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    Thought you might like this as it was raised on a case last year and held against me 80:20 my fault.

    I think it was October last year, or the year before... it's all fusing together so forgive that detail... anyway it was a while back now. I was heading out of LondOn on the M3 when an accident closing off a couple of lanes forced me and on to the A30, and Portsmouth Rd. I came upon a set of temporary roadwork lights just outside the One Oak public house and was ambling up to the head of the queue (no oncoming//lights at red) when a young woman exited a private entrance turning right, in to me.

    I'd positioned myself way to the right, as there was no oncoming, and do this regularly in similar situs just to give myself more room. A broad sheet of broken chevrons divide the road and I'd say I was on its outer edge, within the broken White of the RHS border. It's a marked 40. It was dark & dry. I must've approached at around 15--20mph.

    As she exited this private entrance through a 1/3 car space I only saw her at the last moment, and she, glancing left and noticing the red light & no oncoming... gassed it through the gap without a nod to the right. I managed to stop, but she banged into me, shunting the bike into the RHS pavement, pinning it under her drivers side.

    I didn't worry too much at the time as it seemed obvious she had caused the prang. A Midlands bike group handled the claim and I was paid out 100% within about 3 weeks: the zzr1100 was classed a cat C write-off. I'd only insured it for 1,500 TPFT, but was paid 1,890 after the engineers report. Result I thought, and got the cosmetic damage sorted.

    A year later they come back and tell me it's my fault, 'because I was on the chevrons... and that's an illegal manoeuvre'. Like what? I couldn't quite believe it. How can a major insurers get the legal so wrong?

    There's more too, as a woman three cars back claimed I was speeding yet had managed to stop (?). Spin, H, etc will know their braking distances off pat but needless to say, even at 40, or 30, I'd have struck her and been over the bonnet but this did not happen. I thought any brief would easily be able to dismiss that claim by citing physical, mathematical fact, yet a solicitor friend of mine told me that because there was a single witness who claims otherwise, the courts would side with that regardless... I didn't think that'd be the case, esp where such spurious statements could be (scientifically proven to be unsound).

    There's another little twist concerning the (2)insurers, too... which was a little puzzling, but more on that later, perhaps.

    Six months later I've heard zero since: no calls to repay what was sent on, nothing... (and still have a 6 year protected no claims).

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    Should Get Out More Editor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    eh?? Solid bordered chevrons yes. Dotted ones the ex-police instructor leading the hondamac course encouraged us to use, with the caveat that 'all the shit in is there, so easy does it & it's not fault if you get a puncture.'

    Hmmm. And unless you undertook or otherwise annoyed said Witness I'd be very suspicious about a relationship between them & the woman who drove into you.

    Sorry to hear about it-good to see you back though.

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    Should Get Out More Cousin Jack's Avatar
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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Move house. Leave no fowarding address. I doubt they will make the effort to trace you.

    Seriously, if you have heard nothing for 6 months I woud keep still and quiet, if they do write to you again I would be inclined to wait 6 months before you reply. I suspect it is fairly low on their priority list, and could well just fizzle out.

    And good to see you back.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Sorry to hear you were caught out, I hope you weren't harmed? Did you do the decent thing and ĺay your body under the bike to try and protect its bodywork?

    FWIW, I always have to do the sums for braking distances, even then in feet not metres Even then, as you're well aware, no-one can really 'see' those in the real world. And even then, it's 'time', seconds, which matter when it really matters.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Oh dear. GAPS = TRAPS! nosurprise.org.uk

    Ten, first thing I'd say is check the statements for wording.

    Chevrons are NOT cross-hatchings and there is a BIG legal difference. Cross-hatches are straight, chevrons are... well, chevrons... v-shaped markings. A CROSS-HATCHED zone bounded by broken lines is an area you can enter "if safe and necessary to do so". But the Highway Code has a very different view of an area of CHEVRONS bounded by a solid line - "you MUST NOT enter except in an emergency".

    My guess is that you (or the other driver or a witness, or any combination) have made the common mistake and described the cross-hatched markings as chevrons and the insurance company has simply taken the statement at face value.

    As for the witness statement, drivers generally are completely crap at estimating speed of other vehicles. Even 20mph past a stationary car when the driver hasn't seen the bike coming is going to seem to fly past when it's just a metre or so from their door, particularly if the bike has a loud exhaust in a low gear. I remember at the training school one of the instructors getting pulled by a plod who was about to read him the riot act for speed "cos I could hear you from miles off" when his mate pointed the radar gun at him, showing a perfectly legal speed in the 40 limit... the bike was a ZXR250 four cylinder with a ludicrously loud can. As you needed to be doing about 9000rpm to get the thing to pull away and the bike revved to 18,000rpm, the 'expert witness' had equated the racket with speed.

    FWIW, my ex is currently in the middle of a debate with the representatives of a woman who drove into the side of her car when she was completely stationary in a long queue, where two lanes merge into one because of parked vehicles and a bus stop. The other driver's insurance company are claiming she was badly positioned or some such nonsense, and thus responsible for the crash.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor View Post
    Dotted ones the ex-police instructor leading the hondamac course encouraged us to use, with the caveat that 'all the shit in is there, so easy does it & it's not fault if you get a puncture.'
    I just LOVE this kind of advice...

    Yes, it's technically legal... "enter if safe and necessary to do so" and all that guff.

    But what are they there for? Almost inevitably to keep streams of traffic apart, often to protect something like a traffic island where pedestrians can cross, or a right turn refuge for turning vehicles.

    Not too long ago, I watched a rider start to pass a truck using the centre of the road cross-hatchings as a motorcycle overtaking lane. On the plus side, he took it fairly cautiously. On the minus side, he was overtaking around a mild left-hander.

    At that point and knowing the road, I backed off and waited for the somersaulting bike and rider to appear in the road in front of me.

    Fortunately for the rider, nothing was coming the other way. When he spotted the pedestrian island when he was halfway past the truck, he was able to swerve the wrong side of it.

    And now you understand WHY cross-hatched areas are there, you might not be so keen on the advice to use them to 'make progress'!
    Last edited by The Spin Doctor; 19-07-16 at 11:22.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    It's worth looking at the state of the paint - and not just painted 'ghost' islands. If it's scrubbed and worn, then vehicles will regularly enter the area.

    Then there's the aspect of 'where would they be going to?' - if you can see a destination then there's the likelihood of someone heading that way. [Albeit not Ten's situation]

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by The Spin Doctor View Post
    Chevrons are NOT cross-hatchings and there is a BIG legal difference. Cross-hatches are straight, chevrons are... well, chevrons... v-shaped markings. A CROSS-HATCHED zone bounded by broken lines is an area you can enter "if safe and necessary to do so". But the Highway Code has a very different view of an area of CHEVRONS bounded by a solid line - "you MUST NOT enter except in an emergency".
    For some weird reason I find this topic amusing.

    Areas of white diagonal stripes or chevrons painted on the road. These are to separate traffic lanes or to protect traffic turning right.

    If the area is bordered by a broken white line, you should not enter the area unless it is necessary and you can see that it is safe to do so.
    If the area is marked with chevrons and bordered by solid white lines you MUST NOT enter it except in an emergency.
    Guys would you give us any legal example of emergency that can allow you to enter the solid chevrons line as per rule 130?

    And what is the definition of necessary regarding the broken line? Is overtaking deemed necessary? Or only filtering?

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by Val View Post
    Guys would you give us any legal example of emergency that can allow you to enter the solid chevrons line as per rule 130?

    And what is the definition of necessary regarding the broken line? Is overtaking deemed necessary? Or only filtering?
    You might need a magistrate or jury to answer those

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    It's the usual HC "should not" and "must not". An emergency would be something like a load falling off a preceding vehicle which required instant avoiding action.

    I do not believe that overtaking or filtering could be deemed necessary manoeuvres but Horse is of course right that you will never know unless you are (un)lucky enough to defend your decision in court.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by The Spin Doctor View Post
    I just LOVE this kind of advice...

    Yes, it's technically legal... "enter if safe and necessary to do so" and all that guff.

    But what are they there for? Almost inevitably to keep streams of traffic apart, often to protect something like a traffic island where pedestrians can cross, or a right turn refuge for turning vehicles.
    Quite. TBH for the few seconds gain vs time lost fixing a punctured tyre from all the shit in those zones=no brainer for me.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor View Post
    Quite. TBH for the few seconds gain vs time lost fixing a punctured tyre from all the shit in those zones=no brainer for me.
    It's not simply the puncture risk - though I found that out as a courier - it's the reason that the hatchings are there... rather than being treated as a motorcycle overtaking lane, there's a genuine risk of meeting another vehicle or an obstruction.

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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by Val View Post
    For some weird reason I find this topic amusing.
    If I thought for a moment you weren't simply trolling...

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    Really Bored tenbears's Avatar
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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    Quote Originally Posted by Editor View Post
    eh?? Solid bordered chevrons yes. Dotted ones the ex-police instructor leading the hondamac course encouraged us to use, with the caveat that 'all the shit in is there, so easy does it & it's not fault if you get a puncture.' Hmmm. And unless you undertook or otherwise annoyed said Witness I'd be very suspicious about a relationship between them & the woman who drove into you. Sorry to hear about it-good to see you back though.
    Cheers, yes, that's what I'd thought.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cousin Jack View Post
    Move house. Leave no fowarding address. I doubt they will make the effort to trace you. Seriously, if you have heard nothing for 6 months I woud keep still and quiet, if they do write to you again I would be inclined to wait 6 months before you reply. I suspect it is fairly low on their priority list, and could well just fizzle out. And good to see you back.
    Thanks. I was hoping that would be that, but there's a new development...

    Quote Originally Posted by Horse View Post
    Sorry to hear you were caught out, I hope you weren't harmed? Did you do the decent thing and ĺay your body under the bike to try and protect its bodywork? FWIW, I always have to do the sums for braking distances, even then in feet not metres Even then, as you're well aware, no-one can really 'see' those in the real world. And even then, it's 'time', seconds, which matter when it really matters.
    Cheers H. No I was fine and up immediately. I was criticised by the afore mentioned 'witness' for 'hurriedly moving things on': no one was injured and what's the point in holding up rush hour traffic at a bottle neck. Pics to come.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Spin Doctor View Post
    Oh dear. GAPS = TRAPS! nosurprise.org.uk Ten, first thing I'd say is check the statements for wording. Chevrons are NOT cross-hatchings and there is a BIG legal difference. Cross-hatches are straight, chevrons are... well, chevrons... v-shaped markings. A CROSS-HATCHED zone bounded by broken lines is an area you can enter "if safe and necessary to do so". But the Highway Code has a very different view of an area of CHEVRONS bounded by a solid line - "you MUST NOT enter except in an emergency". My guess is that you (or the other driver or a witness, or any combination) have made the common mistake and described the cross-hatched markings as chevrons and the insurance company has simply taken the statement at face value.
    Hi... yeah. I know. You know I know. It was dark and only a cars width opening from an unlit private exit, and I did actually manage to stop... she just kept coming on, shunting me over to the rightside curbing. I provided a pretty good schematic and photographs in support so there's no mistaking the markings etc... I'll put them up. First two are the scene, looking down a line of traffic waiting at the temporary lights; the other the private exit and road markings.




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    Really Bored tenbears's Avatar
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    Default Re: Broken chevrons

    The following pictures may disturb some viewers.









    ... so that was the Cat C write-off. And a cheque for 1,800 duly received some weeks after. I bought the bike back for 80, got it back together, running & MOT'd. The only downside is being a category write-off it cannot be re-written off, so if it's involved in another accident for any reason the loss, I imagine, will be mine. Anyway, there was no mention of a 'without prejudice' when the payment in full arrived and I assumed that was that. Oddly, the original insurers wouldn't reinsure it (knowing the history and despite it's new MOT) without an engineer's report yet wouldn't provide details of any engineers I could source a report from. While this was going on, the other party's insurers made an offer for insurance I couldn't refuse, and as I'd used them previously for bike cover over the years, and as they too knew the history, I took it: 90 for the year, 5 years no claims intact. The last I heard from my original insurers was that they were happy to accept liability on the basis of my 'illegal manoeuvre' and happy to pay up. I refused to accept any liability.

    Wind forward to Friday morning and I have a small claims court order land through the post from the owner of the car involved [third party's partner] claiming damages & interest... some 1,500 which I have 14 days to reply. There's a long list of my failures:
    • Drove into collision with the claimant's correctly proceeding vehicle
    • Failed to head the presence and/or position of other vehicles on the road, and in particular the claimants vehicle
    • Failed to stop, slow down, guide or manoeuvre their vehicle so as to avoid the collision
    • Failed to make any adequate observations...
    • Failed to apply their brakes in sufficient or proper time or at all
    • Failed to drive with due care and attention
    • Failed to give way

    Errr... all points I would've accused the [claimant of]! >=o[

    C'mon, surely it's a common right of way violation, and clearly they are at fault. Annoying or what? Not only was the bike written off, and serious injury narrowly avoided, but they now want to add robbery to the insult. Aint gonna 'appen....

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