Melbourne driver fined $1000 for cyclist's 'car-door' death

Christine Savic is fined $1,000 dollars by Melbourne Magistrates Court for the "unintended catastophic outcome" of opening her door into a cyclist

Cyclists have described the $1,000 fine handed to a driver in Melbourne, who knocked a cyclist under the wheels of a truck when she opened her car door, as too lenient.

Alberto Paulon, 25, was riding along Sydney Road in the Australian city with his fiancée Christina when Christine Savic's opening car door hit him and sent him into the path of a passing truck.

According to, Melbourne Magistrates Court heard that Ms Savic looked for cyclists in her side mirror before getting out of her car, but she only saw Paulon's fiancée approaching and waited for her to pass.

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As she opened her door, she clipped Paulon and he fell under the rear wheels of the truck and died instantly. Upon handing down the fine, Magistrate Brian Clifford described Ms Savic's action as having an "unintended catastophic outcome".

But Ed Hore from the Australian Cycling Alliance said that the fine was insufficient for the life that was taken away.

“$1000 is how much Alberto's life was worth… Without proper penalties there is no incentive to look out for another human being,” he said, reported on

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Paulon's fiancée Christina, however, told Australia's 7News that she understood that Paulon's death was an accident and that no amount of money would bring her partner back.

VicRoads, the government body that looks after roads in the state of Victoria, has said a segregated cycle way along Sydney Road would be the safest option, but a spokesman said there is no commitment to a 'grander plan' than the current painted road warnings.

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Stuart Clarke is a News Associates trained journalist who has worked for the likes of the British Olympic Associate, British Rowing and the England and Wales Cricket Board, and of course Cycling Weekly. His work at Cycling Weekly has focused upon professional racing, following the World Tour races and its characters.