Vehicle Collision Investigation – Motorcycle and Motorcar

AGI Vehicle Collision Investigation

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At about 1740 hours on Sunday, 29 September 2013, a motorcycle (hereinafter referred to as The Motorcycle) driven by Mr. X collided with a motorcar (hereinafter referred to as The Car) driven by Ms A was reported to have occurred at the traffic light junction of Jalan Semarak and the slip road onto the West-bound lanes of the ‘Duta-Ulu Klang Expressway‘. The Motorcycle reportedly collided with the rear offside (right side of driver facing forwards) corner of The Car, resulting in severe damage to both vehicles. Mr X sustained severe injuries to his spine, right hand, ribs and legs while Ms A and her passenger were uninjured.

Photograph 1: Aerial view of The Junction. Not the position of the slip road (blue arrow) onto the West-bound lanes of DUKE (yellow arrow), and the point of collision (red arrow) on the right South-bound lane of Jalan Semarak.

The traffic light junction (hereinafter referred to as ‘The Junction’) on Jalan Semarak is located on a dual carriageway, with two (2) lanes each on the South-bound and North-bound lanes. Jalan Semarak is located on largely flat surfaces on the approach to The Junction and after The Junction. The slip road onto DUKE is located perpendicular to the West of Jalan Semarak at The Junction, and it is a single carriageway with two (2) lanes. The slip road proceeds up a slight incline from the point of The Junction to merge with the main West-bound lanes of DUKE. The collision of The Motorcycle and The Car resulted from the sudden encroachment and stopping of The Car from the left (East) South-bound of Jalan Semarak into the right (West) South-bound lane of Jalan Semarak. The abrupt stopping of The Car past the white line boundary of The Junction rendered insufficient time and space for The Motorcycle to avoid the collision to the rear of The Car. The damage analysis revealed that The Motorcycle had initially impacted the middle of the rear bumper of The Car, then The Motorcycle spun towards its offside, causing the dents and impact marks on the rear offside corner of The Car. The rear end of The Motorcycle spun around the rear offside corner of The Car at a slight angle, and then the wedge-shaped rear end of The Motorcycle penetrated the bottom rear corner of the window panel on the rear offside door of The Car. The wedge-shaped rear end of The Motorcycle, coupled with the angled rotation of The Motorcycle, also resulted in the downwards and slightly rearwards depression of the outer panel of the rear offside door of The Car.

Photograph 2: General view of the scene of collision taken by passers-by. Note the majority of broken vehicle debris (white arrows) on the road surface in between the rear end of The Car and the solid white boundary (yellow arrow) of The Junction. Note also the impact mark on the middle of the rear bumper (red arrow) of The Car partially obscured by the fallen spoiler, and the dent (light blue arrow) at the offside corner of the rear bumper, which had a slight downwards angle. The rear windscreen wipe (purple arrow), roof and C-pillars (orange arrow) on both side of The Car appear to be unaffected, while the hatch was severely damaged, with a hole (green arrow) on the bottom offside portion of the broken rear windscreen.
Photograph 3: General view of The Motorcycle at the scene of collision taken by passers-by. Note the broken spokes of the front wheel (red arrow), broken front windshield and missing headlamp (yellow arrow), large dent (light blue arrow) on the nearside of the fuel tank, and missing rear passenger bar/grab rail (white arrow), while the seats and top portion of the fuel tank (orange arrows) were largely unaffected. Not also the position of the end of the raised median (purple arrow) and yellow bar (green arrow) of the zebra crossing at the North-bound lanes of Jalan Semarak.
Photograph 4: General view of The Motorcycle at the scene of collision taken by passers-by. Note the rim of the broken front wheel that was slightly bent towards the nearside (red arrow), relatively more severe damage on the offside aspect of the front fairing (yellow arrow), broken nearside front signal lamp (light blue arrow) and the faint scratch mark on the surface of the yellow box (green arrows) indicating that The Motorcycle was dragged from its initial position closer to the middle of the North-bound lanes of Jalan Semarak at the South side of The Junction, near the position of the third yellow bar of the zebra crossing (white arrow) to the West of the raised median.

Based on the damage analysis, available evidence and statements of both plaintiff and defendant witnesses, the reconstructed chronology of events leading to and after the collision are as follows:

  1. Both vehicles originated from the same housing area and both vehicles were travelling along the South-bound lanes of Jalan Semarak at about the same time approaching to The Junction.
  2. Both vehicles had intended to turn right (West) at The Junction to enter the slip road of DUKE.
  3. The Motorcycle and The Car were initially in the right (West) and left (East) South-bound lanes respectively. As The Car approached the Junction, the driver of The Car had swerved into the right (West) South-bound lane upon realizing that the traffic light indicators for turning right (West) were obscured by the columns of the overhead lanes of DUKE.
  4. The Car then abruptly stopped at a slight right (West-ward) angle past the white line boundary of The Junction, due to the changed traffic light indicator.
  5. The Motorcycle was travelling close to the right (West) side edge of the right (West) Southbound-lane when The Car swerved into the right (West) South-bound lane.
  6. The rider of The Motorcycle did not have time to react fully to brake the motorcycle, and in his instinctive reaction, would have swerved slightly to the left (East) in order to avoid The Car that had abruptly stopped past the white line boundary of The Junction, as there was no more space to maneuvers on his right (West).
  7. The impact of The Motorcycle was initially against the middle of the rear bumper of The Car.
  8. The angled position of The Car and the slight swerving action of The Motorcycle caused The Motorcycle to rotate to its offside after the initial impact. The offside portion of The Motorcycle caused the damage to the rear offside corner of The Car.
  9. The rider of The Motorcycle was also rotated to his right and impacted the top rear surface and rear windscreen of The Car.
  10. Subsequently, The Motorcycle spun further towards the offside (West) of The Car, and landed at the middle of the North-bound lanes of Jalan Semarak, at the South side of The Junction.
  11. The rider of The Motorcycle then fell back down onto the road surface after the impact and rotation of The Motorcycle.

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