Car Door Bike Riding Accident
What to Do When a Bicyclist Gets Doored by a Car
Riding a bike in a city as populated as Los Angeles can be risky. Nearly everyday, the streets are packed with vehicles. Unfortunately, there have been many situations where a driver may open their car door without checking to make sure that it is safe to do so. This is primarily why it is important for a bicyclist to ride cautiously on the road to ensure that they do not get into an accident like this. Below, our expert team of bike accident attorneys from West Coast Trial Lawyers will break down legal implications of getting doored and what bicyclists should do in this type of situation.
Getting doored while riding a bike can happen unexpectedly. When a driver or passenger exists from the left-hand side of the vehicle without checking their surroundings, they are putting bicyclists in danger of getting injured. A bicyclist could either not have enough time to react to the door or will swerve into traffic to avoid getting hit. Regardless of what the bicyclist chooses to do, both actions could result in serious injuries.
California is a fault state, meaning that when an accident happens, someone must be found at-fault for causing it. California is also a comparative liability state, meaning that more than one party involved can be found liable for damages and injuries. The weight of liability for each party is determined by the level of negligence they contributed to the collision. Negligence occurs when someone breaches their duty of care. It is the individual’s responsibility to follow the rules of the road in order to protect not only themselves, but others, as well.
Everyone is expected to owe a duty of care to one another while on the road, including cyclists and motorists. Cyclists must do their part by riding in areas where they are given the permission to do so. Drivers must look around their surroundings and cautiously open their door when exiting out of the vehicle. A bike accident that involves a car door is, majority of the time, the driver’s fault. This is because the driver has a greater duty of care and should always check for any upcoming traffic or cyclists before they decide to open their door. It would be negligent for the driver to open the door right away without inspecting the area first to make sure it is safe for them to get out of their vehicle. Bicyclists could keep a lookout for those who seem like they are going to open their car door, however, this is not an easy task for them to fulfill. It can be very difficult to predict when a car door is going to open.
What to Do When Someone Gets Doored
A bicyclist may endure a painful impact after riding into a car door. Those who have been in this type of situation may wonder what would be the ideal steps to take to get the justice they deserve for the injuries and/or damages that were caused by the negligent driver. Here is a list of what you should do after getting into a bike accident because of a car door:
- Call 911. The police will arrive at the scene of the accident and create an official police report. This report can be used as a piece of evidence to include in your insurance claim. Paramedics may also arrive to provide immediate medical attention to the injured cyclist.
- Exchange contact and/or insurance information with the driver. Make sure to also record their license plate number, as well.
- Gather as much evidence as possible. You should take pictures of any damages or injuries that were caused by the impact along with the location of where the incident took place. If there are any witnesses nearby, you should ask them if they would like to provide you with their contact information.
- Contact a bike accident attorney. They will help you build your case to get it approved by the insurance company. A bike accident attorney may also do whatever they can to get you the maximum compensation you deserve for damages, such as medical bills and/or property damage. You will also be legally represented by them in court in the case that a lawsuit needs to be filed.
Need a Bike Accident Injury Attorney? West Coast Trial Lawyers Can Help
Our experienced team of bike accident attorneys at West Coast Trial Lawyers can help you get compensation for damages including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call us today at (213) 927-3700 or email [email protected]to schedule a free consultation with our knowledgeable, caring, and compassionate legal team.