A cyclist suffered multiple fractures to his ribs and spent five days in hospital after he was struck by a P-plater near Port Fairy, a court was told.
The motorist, Jake Sandland, 25, of Warrnambool, pleaded guilty in Warrnambool Magistrates Court this week to careless driving.
The court heard he was driving a Ford Falcon sedan on Skenes Road toward Port Fairy when he struck the male cyclist about 5.45pm on January 23.
The male victim was riding in the same direction and was wearing a fluorescent green vest, a helmet and a flashing light was attached to the bike.
Sandland struck the victim with his passenger-side mirror, causing him to fall of his bike. The offender stopped and spoke to the cyclist, who suffered multiple rib fractures, grazing and bruising and later spent five days in hospital.
Koroit and Macarthur police units attended the scene.
Sandland told police he was following a white van when he heard a noise and realised he had hit the cyclist.
"I didn't see him at all until I heard the bang," he said during a field interview.
The court heard the man had since paid the victim $1000 to replace damaged cycling equipment.
Magistrate Peter Mellas said Sandland was clearly following the van too closely.
"As a result of you not paying enough attention to what was going on, you ended up hitting someone," he said.
"It wasn't intentional but it was certainly careless.
"Maybe you were too close, maybe you were too inpatient. Whatever the case.... it shows a level of disregard to your obligations as a driver."
The man was convicted, fined $700 and his licence was suspended for one month.
The incident was one of seven serious accidents involving bike riders in the south-west in a five week period earlier this year.
In March, south-west police road safety manager Senior Sergeant Chris Asenjo said bike riders made up 19 per cent of all road trauma.
"All road users need to be vigilant. We all need to do more," he said.
"This is about educating all road users to the risks posed to them and improving road user behaviour, it's about us all being more vigilant."
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