When drivers of cars open their doors without first checking for a passing bicycle, bicyclists can be seriously injured if they collide with the door. In fact cyclists suffer more dooring accidents than anyone else on the road.
Often, cyclists are forced to ride very close to both moving traffic and parked vehicles, which is the case here in Des Moines even on designated biking lanes along Ingersoll Avenue. When bicycles and cars mix, there is a much higher chance that a bicycle dooring accident will occur if drivers and their passengers do not take the necessary precaution of looking first before swinging open their doors.
Any occupant of a vehicle intending to open their door on the side of moving traffic must make sure it is reasonably safe to exit their vehicle and that they will not interfere with the movement of traffic by doing so. If an occupant fails to check for traffic, including passing bicyclists, they may be liable for injuries that occur.
Just how serious a dooring accident may be sometimes depends on how fast a bicyclist is traveling when a door unexpectedly opens in their path and perhaps how good their reflexes are when reacting to this dangerous situation. However, even bicyclists traveling at relatively moderate speeds can be serious injured.
Certainly a bicycle accident may result in severe bruising and lacerations or a serious case of road rash leaving sufferers vulnerable to infection. Cyclist may suffer broken bones or teeth and other facial injuries. Because cyclists are so vulnerable in a fall, traumatic brain injuries with and without helmets, spinal injuries, and injuries to internal organs are not uncommon.
When injuries occur because of negligence, in this case opening a car door in the direct path of a bicyclist, the occupant of the car may be responsible for medical bills and lost wages, compensation for disability or disfigurement that is permanent, compensation for pain and suffering, and also any property damage. In the event of a bicyclist fatality following a dooring injury or other negligent action, a wrongful death claim may be pursued that will include additional compensation.
Injured in a Bicycle Dooring Accident?
Contact Experienced Des Moines Bicycle Accident Lawyers
Bicycling is a very popular pastime in central Iowa, particularly in the city streets of Des Moines since the drawing of designated bike lanes. It is important for bicyclists and motor vehicle operators to take particular care when sharing the road. If you or a loved one is injured in a bicycle car accident due to a driver’s negligence, it is important to seek the help of an experienced personal injury attorney. Contact the Des Moines bicycle car accident lawyers of Stoltze & Stoltze PLC for immediate assistance today at 515-244-1473.