Cycling UK’s senior road safety and legal campaigns officer Duncan Dollimore has released a full statement regarding the recent news that transport secretary Chris Grayling MP illegally opened his car door onto a busy road, injuring cyclist Jaiqi Liu.
The statement discusses the criminal implications of the incident and suggests that a full review into offences and penalties given to those who cause harm by “car dooring” cyclists should be undertaken by the government.
The full statement from Duncan Dollimore is here:
“Mr Grayling, as a former justice and current transport secretary, should know it’s a criminal offence to open any door of a vehicle on a road so as to injure or endanger anyone. Currently, it’s treated as a minor offence with a maximum £1000 fine, despite the fact that people have been killed and seriously injured by car dooring.
“Cycling UK spoke to justice officials in September suggesting that a review of the offence and penalties of the car dooring offence is needed. Disappointingly, Grayling’s former department rejected our suggestions and omitted them from their review of offences, which they announced two weeks ago. Hopefully, the ministry of justice will now listen to us and reconsider the entire remit of what is a very limited review.
"Cycling UK is keen to speak to Mr Liu to see if our cyclists’ defence fund is able to provide legal assistance. There are questions about why Mr Grayling was not prosecuted for what appears to be an offence, and CDF has in the past been prepared to commence private prosecutions on behalf of injured cyclists."
Currently “Car dooring” is a criminal offence under Section 42 Road Traffic Act 1988. This offence is punishable by a fine of up to £1,000 and no penalty points can be imposed on the offender’s licence