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Tailgating issue & police

jack6251

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Hello everyone

I've had quite a horrible experience today while out riding my motorbike in Japan. I was tailgated in a way that really shook me up. I was slowing down to make a right turn and out of nowhere, literally out of nowhere (nobody in my mirrors only a few seconds before braking) this guy in a black car came speeding up behind me in a way I honestly thought he was going to hit me. This happened on a rural road.

I made the mistake of telling him he was dangerous and we had a slight exchange with him now telling me he'd call the police, so naturally I'm really worried now.

If he complains today, how many day's might it take for me to receive a visit from the police?

Thank you.
 

Uncle Frank

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In the US , they would tell the car owner they would have to witness the event to do anything about it , and do nothing. If they did visit you , just say you "politely" informed the driver his driving scared you and it's a case of he said & he said , police weren't there and can do nothing. Hopefully Japanese police will let it go and nothing will come of it. Sometimes you can turn it around and get the person's license plate and their description and you file a complaint with the police against the driver saying he almost hit you and was verbally abusive and threatening towards you.
 

jack6251

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In the US , they would tell the car owner they would have to witness the event to do anything about it , and do nothing. If they did visit you , just say you "politely" informed the driver his driving scared you and it's a case of he said & he said , police weren't there and can do nothing. Hopefully Japanese police will let it go and nothing will come of it. Sometimes you can turn it around and get the person's license plate and their description and you file a complaint with the police against the driver saying he almost hit you and was verbally abusive and threatening towards you.

Thank you for replying. There's a lot of truth to what you said about my being scared. I honestly thought he was going to slam into the back of my bike. He came from absolutely nowhere at a fair rate of speed. I'd experienced this all morning from other drivers too but the incident with the last guy was too much. It's my understanding that a new law has been passed in Japan to attempt to reduce these very incidents. I guess many people just didn't get the memo if the new law is active. Unfortunately for me I don't have a rear mounted camera so can't prove anything I say. I'm concerned because I did do a fair bit of shouting basically because I swear, as I was breaking prepping for my right turn, his car was just getting larger and larger in my mirrors. He was way too close!
 

cocoichi

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I'd experienced this all morning from other drivers too but the incident with the last guy was too much.

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Unfortunately for me I don't have a rear mounted camera so can't prove anything I say.

Maybe it is time you invested in a rear mounted camera ;)

How can shouting be something you are scared of, honestly? I'm sure it is the adrenaline going through your system when you thought you were going to be hit, and anyway, it has nothing to do with the accident. And IF the police came to your house, they are required to look at it from a neutral stance, so you can just explain what happened and I am sure that will be it.
 

jack6251

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Yes, I'm sure you're right it's just that it's so out of character for me to blow a gasket like that and yup, I was all shaky after due to adrenaline. It was supposed to be an enjoyable ride to a mountain shrine but the journey there with crazy truck drivers then finally this last guy, I just got to the end of my ability to stay quiet about the tailgating.
 

cocoichi

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Yes, I'm sure you're right it's just that it's so out of character for me to blow a gasket like that and yup, I was all shaky after due to adrenaline. It was supposed to be an enjoyable ride to a mountain shrine but the journey there with crazy truck drivers then finally this last guy, I just got to the end of my ability to stay quiet about the tailgating.

Last week while in the supermarket here in the Netherlands, two quite innocent and calm looking people got into an argument about who could go first to the register. One person told the other it was a little childish, and that really made the other person shake and shout. A very minor thing to say, but because it caught the person off guard, he responded quite severely. Actually, I could see in that guy's eyes that he actually thought " what the hell am I doing?? well too late to back off now.." So I guess really all it takes is a bit of adrenaline to lose your temper.

So, don't worry about it. I am sure that guy forgot about it by dinner time.
 

Petaris

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I doubt he would have called the police. I know you were shaken up but something to keep in mind if it happens again is that you can call their bluff. Just say, "Ok, lets wait here for the police, I'm sure they will be interested in my report of your dangerous driving." Say it with a straight face and serious voice and you will probably see the guy huff and puff and get out of their as fast as he can.

And if they do call the police then you get to inform them of the dangerous tailgating. Also, a camera might not be a bad idea in Japan anyway. From what I have understood previously traffic related accidents can be "messy" in the legal sense and having a video available showing what happened might be a big benefit.
 

jack6251

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I doubt he would have called the police. I know you were shaken up but something to keep in mind if it happens again is that you can call their bluff. Just say, "Ok, lets wait here for the police, I'm sure they will be interested in my report of your dangerous driving." Say it with a straight face and serious voice and you will probably see the guy huff and puff and get out of their as fast as he can.

And if they do call the police then you get to inform them of the dangerous tailgating. Also, a camera might not be a bad idea in Japan anyway. From what I have understood previously traffic related accidents can be "messy" in the legal sense and having a video available showing what happened might be a big benefit.
I've calculated an approximate speed he must have been doing to "appear from nowhere". I based it on the time it took for me to turn around on the empty road. I'd pulled over in a safe place prior to all this as I knew I'd missed my turn for the shrine as it was a funny hidden turn. So, I checked Google Maps and happy I was close, I did my shoulder checks, no traffic at all and made a u-turn back to the turn to the shrine. All this took roughly 15 seconds so I used Google Maps Distance tool and an online calculation tool. I based his distance of travel to me at approx 260m which is where I couldn't see around the bend anymore. As I say, the road was dead when I initiated the u-turn from a standing start at the side of the road. Roughly 15 seconds later he's up my butt so he covered the length of road in the time it took me to do my turn and almost make it to my shrine turn.

The maximum speed on this road is 40 kph (it's all kph in Japan) he was going at 65-75kph to have arrived behind me in that time.

A camera and video would prove that much better of course so yup, gonna buy one!
 

Uncle Frank

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I always thought the military in the 70's had a weird thing about vehicle accidents. Even if we were not at fault , the rule was you visited the person to say you were sorry AND you had to take a bottle of Johnny Walker and 2 cartons of American cigarettes as a gift.
 

Majestic

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The new law relates to what is called "aori-unten" (煽り運転). In other words: road-rage. It is very much in the public consciousness now, with some egregious examples being caught on camera and the perpetrator being apprehended and publicly shamed for his (and his girlfriend's) outrageous behavior. The driver would know this for sure, and I think would be in a disadvantageous position in any confrontation with the police. I don't think he would dare contact the police to report someone who was merely driving in a way he didn't like. The police will not come knocking on your door unless you hit someone and drove away. If, on the astronomically remote chance that the police do visit you, just remember the phrase aori-unten and apply it to your accuser.
 

jack6251

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Yes thank you. Aori Unten is a phrase I stumbled across yesterday and ran it past my Japanese friend. She helped me with a few more sentences to the effect of "He was tailgating and driving fast behind me" etc. I'm actually going to prepare a statement with jpegs of where the incident occured..."just in case". I'm going to polish up these jpegs later.
 

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