Can I claim against emerging farm vehicle?

I was riding along a country road at 50 to 55mph and was just exiting a sweeping bend when I saw a large tractor/trailer emerging from a road to my left. It was moving into the road, blocking more and more of my path. I thought that the driver would see me and I didn’t think I could safely stop so I attempted to go around the front. He continued to emerge and the gap that I was heading for closed before I could get through. I tried to brake knowing that a crash was inevitable. The police are blaming me for the accident and want me to go on a driver awareness course. I don’t think I was to blame as I was going under the speed limit. Am I likely to succeed in a claim?
Stan, Yeovil

Answer

I would need to see all the police and witness evidence before giving you a detailed opinion. Whether you were there to be seen when he pulled out will be crucial to liability. As he was already emerging when you first saw him it is likely you were not there to be seen when he decided to pull out. Although you are unlikely to recover 100% of your compensation you may well succeed in part. Although you were travelling within the speed limit your opponent will likely argue that you were going too fast for the road conditions (the bend) and had you not been you could have safely stopped.

Download

Ask the expert (MCN Column pdf)