It has not been a good start to the year for me with Transperth bus drivers, having experienced two incidents in the first nine days of the year whilst out riding my bike. This is not okay; no vulnerable road user, heck no road user should have to put up with carless driving by Transperth employees.
The second and more significant incident of concern occurred at approximately 8:30 AM (timestamp on video is ahead by approximately 20 minutes) on Wednesday January 9, 2013 as I on my bicycle and the bus where northbound on Oceanside Promenade, Mullaloo approaching the roundabout at West View Boulevard. Yep approaching a dreaded roundabout.
As I approached the intersection, the driver of the bus chose that movement to commence a passing manoeuvre instead of waiting the few seconds to allow me to safely enter and exit the roundabout.
It does not end there, as the driver also appears to cross a solid white line (an offence under Road Traffic Code) when passing me. That solid white line should have been a very big clue to the driver that he didn’t have room to pass! But no he decides to save a second or three and force his way past anyway. Bad luck if he collects a cyclist on the way through.
Of course his decision to pass was stupid as ran out of room to safely pass me BEFORE merging back into the lane. So what does he do? Mr “professional” bus driver merges back into the lane when he is alongside me, forcing me to take evasive action to avoid being hit by the bus!
What the heck, it is only a cyclist. Bad luck if they get hit right?
It is clear to me this Transperth driver needs to chill out, slow down and to ensure that he passes safely and clearly BEFORE merging back into the lane and to do this NOW before he seriously injuries or worse kills a vulnerable road user.
What is more frustrating is that less than a minute later I passed the bus so this driver’s action where a pointless act of careless driving.
Lucky for this driver, my video camera records files in segments, i.e., it creates a new file every 50 minutes of recording, so at the critical moment it ended one file and started the next one so there is a gap of a second or two where I had to actually take evasive action to avoid hitting the bus. Due to this loss of a second or so I have decided to not take this matter up with the Joondalup Police where I would have pushed hard for a traffic infringement notice to be issued.
I have however reported the matter to Transperth so hopefully that may result in this “professional” driver learning from his error of judgement.
The first incident is still under review by Transperth but was again a silly piece of driving by the driver who clearly needs to understand his or her nearside clearances. The driver got way to close, so close in fact that I could have easily smacked the side of the bus with my hand. Once again a careless inconsiderate act of driving that could have had serious consequences.
Hopefully these are one off incidents rather than a sign that Transperth has not learnt from previous reports of dangerous driving. The response then from Mr Reece Waldock and the Public Transport Authority was seriously lacking; hopefully this time things are different because no one should have to die at the hands of a Transperth driver to get Mr Waldock to act.