A cyclist in the US has filed a $35,000 lawsuit against a motorist following an incident which took place at the weekend. Walter Heindl has alleged that Gary McCorkel, an employee of Corolla, North Carolina company Wild Horse Adventure Tours, overtook him at an unsafe distance.
Heindl was cycling along Highway 12 in the Outer Banks region when McCorkel overtook him. The cyclist can be heard shouting “Jesus, you f—!” before steering into the sandy verge of the road and falling.
The motorist continues on and doesn’t stop. However, a driver on the opposite side of the road stops and asks “are you alright?”
Heindl later uploaded the video to YouTube with the comment:
“You never know when wearing a GoPro might produce evidence of an accident! In this video, a driver of a Wild Horse Adventure Tours vehicle passes within inches of a cyclist, on a road with no shoulder.”
“When the driver’s maneuver causes the cyclist to crash, the driver flees the scene of the accident. This video has been shared with Wild Horse Adventure Tours, which continues to employ the driver, Gary McCorkel.”
In the video it states the following: “In North Carolina, it is illegal for a motorist to allow less than two feet when passing a cyclist, or to return to the right side of the road before it is safe to do so.”
It also states:
“N.C.G.S. § 20-166(a1) provides the driver of any vehicle who knows or reasonably should know that the vehicle which he or she is operating is involved in a crash and that the crash has resulted in serious bodily injury shall immediately stop his or her vehicle at the scene of the crash.”
“The driver shall remain with the vehicle at the scene of the crash until a law-enforcement officer completes the investigation of the crash or authorizes the driver to leave and the vehicle to be removed.”
“A willful violation of this subsection shall be punished as a Class H felony.”
Heindl who is a lawyer, has since come in for criticism from some posters and locals on forums stating that he should not be filing such a lawsuit.
“Our businesses are families and people, not faceless corporations that you can deface just because you feel like it. We, as a community, feel the effects of your greed in a very real way,” Kasey Powell wrote. “Learn to handle life like a real man, with dignity and respect. Take your business and biking elsewhere, you are not welcome here. “
Another poster commented: “Why didn’t you contact the owner (of the business) to give him an opportunity to right a wrong? Why, instead, did you go straight to filing a $25k claim of an occurrence a business owner was unaware of? You operate like only a corrupt lawyer knows how to best, and handled this situation like a snake.”