Read this on the Ukrainian Village Neighborhood Watch Facebook page.
A man in pickup truck was headed west on Grand. He suddenly pulled over & got out of the truck & walked into the street. There was a cyclist trying to get around him but the truck driver pushed the cyclist into oncoming east bound traffic. The cyclist hit an east bound car & fell to the ground. I'm not sure if the biker's helmet was pinned under the rear tire of the car. Bystanders were trying to cut the chin strap of the helmet. The man is alive & was taken away in an ambulance. I was driving behind the pickup truck when it happened & called 911 & gave info to the police. I believe the driver of the pickup was arrested. Police said it happened due to some road incident. The cyclist's head was almost run over. Absolutely unbelievable.
The cyclist was riding his bike & was trying to ride around the man who got out of his truck. The driver of the truck purposefully pushed the moving cyclist into oncoming traffic. At that time of day (4:40p), there is quite a bit of traffic. I could see the amount of cars heading eastbound. I'm sure the truck driver could have seen that too but was probably blinded by rage. He also didn't foresee the outcome of his actions. At least he stayed at the scene & didn't drive off. I'm sure he's kicking himself in the ass for reacting the way he did
Besides the disturbing image of the truck driver pushing the cyclist into traffic, while I was on the phone with 911, the operator asked me if the cyclist was still alive. I told her I didn't know but told her that his head appeared to be beneath the rear wheel of the car. I asked the people who were attending to him if he was still breathing. A woman was taking his pulse. They said he was.
This is just a reminder: DO NOT ENGAGE! On bikes we are very vulnerable. And we can be seriously injured by thrown objects, fists or shoves from passing cars...or unhappy pedestrians!
My usual tactic when I encounter an enraged person, is to stop immediately, get off my bike, putting it between myself and the angry person, and just stand there facing him. I'm much more stable that way. And I attempt to calm him down by apologizing for whatever transgression he is irate about. In the worst case, he might grab my bike from my hands, and take out his ire by throwing it. Which results in a few frame scuffs perhaps. But physically I'm untouched, calm and conciliatory. The whole idea is to give the person time to cool down. "When they go low; we go high...."
"Don't Engage" is best when possible, but don't apologise if you're not in the wrong. Apologising may only further justify aggression to the attacker's mind.
Dismount if you can't escape, and be ready to throw your bike if the situation goes further south.
"...if you can't escape..."
There's no way you can escape a car when riding a bike. I've tried. And that crazy driver flipped U-turns in traffic, imperiled pedestrians, and even drove up onto the sidewalk to chase me down. I'm just lucky he stopped at the last moment and didn't run me over when he finally had me cornered.
I'll agree that apologizing might just get thrown back in your face as insincere. But the whole objective is to talk it out and deescalate.