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Author Topic: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea  (Read 733 times)

j0hn

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #15 on: August 12, 2019, 03:44:59 PM »

Quote
We really don't know all the facts about the car on Skye but based on the BBC story, it would seem that the car wasn't being driven at the time, it was parked.   So I reason that it becomes more likened to a claim for theft, where I think it is not at all uncommon for insurers to reject claims where the owner(/hirer?) has shown negligence.  If the insurers went down that path, I'd say that the HC could easily be cited as evidence that they were negligent.    And you can still be negligent, even if you haven't broken any law

Could's and Should's.

The driver/owner is liable.

The outcome would be that an insurance company will put such an incident down as the drivers fault, paying out the claim and increasing premiums.
The claim would need declared on subsequent insurance applications for 5 years.

I'd be very surprised (gobsmacked) if they completely rejected a claim for a broken handbrake cable for the reason of negligence.
Never come across that before and I can't find any examples of it online either.

In the 9 and half years I worked in a coachworks/car body repair shop (I qualified as a sheet metal worker when I left school) I never saw an insurance claim rejected for handbrake failure.
We probably repaired a dozen cars in that time that were both the perpetrator and/or victim of a handbrake failure.
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2019, 04:22:38 PM »

Clearly j0hn, I bow to your experience.

Good news for the holidaymakers. :)
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j0hn

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2019, 05:57:15 PM »

It may not be all that great for them.

Isurance isn't what it used to be with ever single detail needing declared now.
They do try weasel out any claim they can.

The car in question being a hire car I've no doubt the company that hired the car out has sufficient insurance to offset any possible losses.

The last few times I've hired a car I've been able to pay a small fee to avoid any possible insurance excess in the case of an accident.
It was around £4-5 or I could choose not to pay the fee but there would be a £500 excess if I had an accident.

Different hire firms will have different insurance policies and the holiday makers in question may well end up on foot with no assistance from the insurance company.
It would be very worrying if they had to pay for any damages above any agreed excess, if there was one.

A driver is liable for any damages caused by a handbrake failure (for the reasons in the highway code, it's preventable). A fully comprehensive insurance policy should cover any damages done though.
Any compulsory/voluntary excess would need paid and premiums would likely increase on any policy without a protected no claims bonus.

« Last Edit: August 12, 2019, 05:59:32 PM by j0hn »
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2019, 08:17:28 PM »

Moving away from the specific example on Skye, coincidentally, I spent the past weekend changing the handbrake cables on my ten year old Volvo.

I reckon that if any average person with a basic mechanical aptitude or awareness of physics had to do that job, even if they were not into car maintenance, they might reassess their faith in the handbrake.   A single small 10mm nut secures the cable to the lever, via a washer thatís significantly disfigured from the strain.   The first cable fans out into two cables that transfer to the wheels, with quite delicate looking pivots on the expanders within the wheel mounted mechanisms.   And these two cables donít provide redundancy, an equaliser rod ensures that failure of either cable would cause failure on both wheels.  And thatís on a Volvo, with reputation for safety. :o

Iíve never had the opportunity to drive a car with electric handbrake.   But fairly sure if I took one apart, I would find I had even less confidence in it, vs cable operated. :(
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kitz

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #19 on: August 14, 2019, 03:53:13 PM »

I think it may be more pertinent asking what on earth was the car doing parked on the pier as opposed to whether or not it had been left in gear.

I was a bit puzzled at the position of the car and how it could have ended up like that.   Using b*cats link, I switched to the street view version from where you can see there is a no entry sign prohibiting vehicles on the pier unless they are loading onto the ferry. 

It says in the news report that they had quote "parked their car on Kylerhea's steep pier to view otters in the sea nearby."  From looking at the streetview, there is absolutely no way the car could have ended up where it was unless it had been on the pier ramp. If it had been on the other side of the no enty sign then it would have either hit the hut or dry stone wall if the handbrake failed.     To make matters worse, there is a proper car park further up with picnic area where they should have parked for otter watching.

The fact that the car was left parked in a place where vehicles were prohibited and beyond a no entry sign is more likely why the insurance company is bitching.
That sign quite clearly says "No vehicles to pass this point unless instructed by a crew member". 

Street view linky
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #20 on: August 14, 2019, 09:50:42 PM »

My speculation would be that the car was actually parked just before the ďdo not passĒ sign, in a similar spot to the red car on street view.   If left with steering set to the right might it not roll onto the ramp, then off the right hand edge, into the approximate resting place?
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burakkucat

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #21 on: August 14, 2019, 10:18:53 PM »

I'm not too sure.  :-\

The image shown on the BBC web-site bothers me. How could the car end up in the position? My only suggestion is that it was dragged, via a line (or lines) from the shore, into that position. The ultimate aim being that a suitable recovery vehicle, with an appropriate hoist and parked on the roadway, would lift the car from that rather damp situation.
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #22 on: August 14, 2019, 10:39:12 PM »

There might also be the possibility that the keys were left in the car, thus preventing the steering wheel lock from holding the steering position.    In that case, depending upon which wheel first contacted the beach, the steering could have suddenly changed direction.   That is, it went over the edge whilst steered to the right then, on contact with the beach, steering span back to the left.

Leaving the keys in the car may not be that unlikely.  Personally I find a hire carís keys a bit of a nuisance to carry, as they are not attached to my other keys.    The hirer might have assessed that since there was obviously no realistic possibility of theft in such an idyllic spot, leaving the keys in the car would do no harm.
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kitz

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Re: Rescue Bid After Car Runs Off Skye Pier into Sea
« Reply #23 on: August 14, 2019, 11:12:08 PM »

If it was parked were the red car is and even if the steering wheel was turned to the right, natural trajectory surely would have taken it over the left hand side of the pier, not the right?   I can't see any way if it was parked before the no entry sign, that it could go over the RH side.

B*cat may be correct about it being tethered in that position for easy recovery later.  It does say the lifeboat crew ran lines to the shore to stop it fully submerging.

ETA

There's a little bit more info in the Sun where it says they had parked it on the slipway. :(

Quote

A PAIR of tourists and their child parked their car on a slipway to look at the wildlife - only for it to slide into the sea.


"They couldn't have applied the handbrake firmly enough. Fortunately they were not in the vehicle. It rolled over the side of the slipway, turned upside down but settled the right way up.

"It meant we had to cancel the rest of the day's sailings, but we will be operating as normal on Monday.
"It is the first time I can remember such a thing happening. The recovery truck did a great job and got it out with a crane. But the car is not in a good state."

Kyle Inshore Lifeboat was launched at 1.15pm. As the tide was coming in and the car was in danger of becoming fully submerged, the lifeboat crew assisted with securing the vehicle to the pier to enable the car to be recovered.

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