'Sickening to watch': Driver’s ‘super scary’ act sparks outrage

Nick Whigham
·Assistant News Editor
·2-min read

A NSW cyclist has captured the dramatic moment a motorist took out a group of riders by driving too close as they pedalled along the side of a major road.

Footage of the incident was shared widely on social media on Sunday after it was posted to Twitter by SBS and cycling journalist Michael Tomalaris who described it as “shocking”.

He said the incident took place in Newcastle.

In the video, a car can be seen travelling in the left lane behind a pack of cyclists riding in the dedicated area off to the left of the road.

The driver clipped a group of cyclists in Newcastle.
The driver clipped a cyclist who appeared at the front right of the group. Source: Twitter

The car drives so close to the group that it hits a cyclist, causing him to crash into the rider beside him. The collision then causes a resulting pile-up as multiple cyclists behind them hit the deck.

Moments after the initial impact, one cyclist is left scrambling to get back to his feet and off the road, out of the way of incoming traffic.

Police confirmed to Yahoo News Australia on Monday they were aware of the video and that the incident had been reported to police.

A police spokesperson said they believe it happened in the Newcastle area and said authorities were “hoping to get more information later.”

“The incident has been reported to police and an investigation has commenced,” they said. “Anyone with any information is urged to come forward.”

Hundreds shocked by ‘super scary’ clip

Hundreds of people online were shocked by the 30-second clip.

“Super scary and this is why I gave up biking,” replied veteran journalist and former ABC correspondent Zoe Daniels.

Also commenting on the vision was Australian wheelchair racer and Paralympic gold medallist Kurt Fearnley who called it “Sickening to watch”.

“This terrifies me. My husband rides his bike EVERYWHERE. Australian motorists don’t see or respect cyclists,” another Twitter user wrote.

NSW law requires drivers of a motor vehicle to leave a minimum distance of one metre when passing bicycle riders, including in situations when they may not realise a vehicle is approaching them from behind.

The required gap is increased to 1.5 metres when the speed limit is above 60kms, as it appears to be in video captured on the weekend.

Drivers who do not comply with the rule face a fine of $349 and two demerit points while the offence attracts a maximum court fine of $2,200.

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