Sunday, 31 October 2010

Motorbike accidents in the media - Part 18

Alrighty, time for another one:

First up, Biker dead in Woodridge crash (Courier Mail, October 03)

Now, this is a very straightforward article, basic and complete as far as it goes, with just one problem: "he was dislodged from his bike after veering into a median strip."

What? "Dislodged"? and "veering"? Without an eye witness, "veering" is an assumption. And "dislodged" is just plain stupid. What's wrong with a plain and simple "came off"?

"Dislodged" is a wank, plain and simple.

Next, Motorcycle rider dies in crash at Elimbah; other crashes at Toowoomba and Cape Tribulation (September 18, Courier Mail)

Chronologically out of order. Whoops, I suppose.

Yep, another gloriously bad headline.

The article itself is okay - brief and to the point, detailing three separate accidents. There's a formatting problem, but what the hell.

Pumicestone Rd is a bit country, and at 5am all sorts of things can go wrong, including one or both speeding, getting distracted, or running out of talent.

The language used is fairly neutral, so that's good.

And moving on to: Man dies in hospital eight days after motorcycle crash on Esk-Kilcoy Road (Courier Mail, September 19)

I have no idea why the dates of items have become messed up, I really don't.

Five paragraphs, mention of three separate fatal motorcycle accidents, the second of which is the Pumicestone Road one above.

The first one, three paragraphs, is a single-vehicle accident on the fairly fun Esk-Kilcoy Road. Make your own mind up about that one.

The final paragraph mentions "falling off his motorbike". Give me strength.

Otherwise, concise and inoffensive article.

Finally: Drunk biker disqualified (Queensland Times, October 21)

Hallelujah, not a fatality!

Not an accident, either, but I humbly suggest it still qualifies for this series.

Basically: Unregistered and uninsured 250CC (not sure why the capitals, there) bike, .125, while unlicensed.

The first bit that gets me is: If he's already unlicensed, what has he been disqualified from? I can only assume: from reapplying for his licence.

I'm also interested that they put in the engine capacity of the bike, but nothing else about it. I can only assume it was in the police report. Not sure why it was in the police report, though. Probably because: the rules said so.

This bloke lost his licence originally for drink driving, then had two seizures and then not reapplied, because he was "lazy". Seizures aren't good. Particularly not for road users. In fact, there is now an entire law in Queensland requiring people with medical conditions which may affect their driving, to report them. We have this law after lobbying from a woman whose son was killed by a driver with, funnily enough, epilepsy. Story, also from the QT, at Jet's Law honours toddler's memory.

This bloke may not even qualify for his licence, ever again.

This is a nice, succinct article, but following that lead about seizures may have been interesting. Or, possibly in another article. Sounds like a good excuse to me.

P.S.: While working with brain injury, I spoke to a man who wanted to get a licence "just to drive around home on the Sunshine Coast, I don't want to go on the highway or anything, just local, where I know the roads." While working, in that capacity, I was considerably more polite and sympathetic than I would be now, even when he complained that he couldn't see why they wouldn't give him one. Of course, the simple answer is: They don't have licences that work like that, so no, you can't.

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