Updated: Road rage leads to car hitting rider

Road rage

A 23-year-old male rider is in hospital with cuts and a suspected spinal injury after an alleged road rage incident escalated in Sydney’s inner-west on Friday.

Update 24 March 2020: About 8.25pm on Saturday, Police searched a Mortlake home and seized a number of items, including a car and clothing. The driver was arrested at Burwood Police Station yesterday (23 March 2020), where he was charged with driving furiously to cause bodily harm and assault occasioning actual bodily harm. He has been granted conditional bail, to appear before Burwood Local Court on Monday 1 June 2020.

The incident began about 10.45pm on Friday (20 March 2020) when the motorcyclist was leaving a friend’s home on Ian Parade, Concord.

Police say a man driving a car pulled up next to the rider and the pair began arguing.

The driver allegedly got out of his vehicle and attempted to push the rider off his motorbike. The rider pushed back and rode off.

The car followed for about two kilometres before running into the motorcycle and driving away.

Officers from Burwood Police Area Command attended and established a crime scene.

The rider suffered cuts and a suspected spinal injury and was taken to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in a stable condition.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.

Tips on handling road rage

We should do all we can to avoid being lured into road rage as riders usually come off second-best to bigger vehicles.

Queensland Police Senior Sergeant Ian Park who created the #ridesafely4me Facebook site says he’s not sure if it’s perception or reality, but “our roads appear to be becoming angrier places”.

“Unfortunately, it seems to involve individuals from all road user groups as both the victims and the perpetrators. Motorcyclists and bicyclists are of course the most vulnerable due to the lack of physical protection around them. But the fundamentals of personal safety of the roads are no different to anywhere else,” he says.

Queensland Police Senior Sergeant Ian Park a social media sensation reason
Sgt Park and a group of riders

Here are Ian’s tips to avoiding road rage:

If you find yourself feeling unsafe as a result of the actions of another road user, the first priority is to remove yourself from the situation as safely as possible. Unfortunately far too often incidents of poor behaviour by one road user to another are only exacerbated when the ‘victim’ retaliates. If another party chooses to yell at you, beep their horn or flash their lights – so what? Let them get it out of their system and get on their way. Inflaming the situation by ‘biting back’ rarely assists, and often only makes the situation more unsafe for everyone.

However if the other party continues to behave in a manner that makes you feel unsafe, then consider your environment. Perhaps pull into a service station, licensed premises or shopping centre that is likely to be fitted with external CCTV. This will often discourage the aggressor from taking the matter further if they know their actions (and registration details) are going to be recorded.

If no such place is available continue to drive without reacting to the aggressor until a place of safety is available, avoid making eye contact and attempt to disengage from the situation as best and safely as you can.

If you feel that you are in imminent danger, pull over and call triple zero (000). Don’t forget that ‘000’ from a mobile phone doesn’t necessarily go to your nearest operator, so always be ready to say ‘I need police in (name of City/town or nearest regional centre)’.

When speaking with a 000 operator, pass on relevant information that could assist police to investigate the matter, for example, registration details, descriptions of the person/s in the vehicle, time, date, correct location (in case there are traffic monitoring cameras located nearby etc.), descriptions about any features of the vehicle that are not standard (i.e. post factory fitted wheels, decorations, accessories, damage).

Emergency first-aid apps reason

If you carry any kind of video recording device, ensure the footage is set aside so that it doesn’t get recorded over before being provided to police. Make sure you don’t just secure the footage of the incident – also keep footage leading up to and beyond the incident to help clarify any potential counter claims by the other party that it was actually you that was the aggressor.

If the situation is over, but you are still of the belief that the matter warrants investigation with a view to action by police, you always have the right to report it. You can either attend your nearest open police station to speak to someone, contact the non-urgent police reporting number which is now 131 444 in almost all Australian Police Jurisdictions. Similarly most policing services across Australia also provide on-line reporting services. Just search the police service in your State or Territory to find their websites and follow the prompts.

Be mindful, however that any complaint of an incident involving one person upon another without any supporting evidence is often difficult to successfully prosecute. A successful prosecution requires sufficient evidence being presented to a court to determine that an offence was committed beyond reasonable doubt.

However, this should not prevent you from reporting the matter, but is something to keep in mind if police determine there is not sufficient evidence for a matter to proceed. It doesn’t necessarily mean police don’t believe you! If you provide police with a video recording you must be willing and able to give evidence.

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