New Jersey Bike Dooring Accident Lawyer
Car "Dooring" Bike Accident Victims
In recent years, cities in New Jersey and all across the United States have started implementing better bicycling infrastructure to encourage this environmentally friendly and healthy activity. For people with short work commutes, bicycling presents a better alternative to conventional fuel-driven modes of transportation. It is also now safer than ever before since more and more streets are incorporating designated bicycle lanes. However, there are still certain hazards that harm or even kill bicyclists who are unlucky enough to encounter them. "Dooring" is one of them.
What is Dooring?
"Dooring" occurs in one of two ways. In the first scenario, a bicyclist is riding on the right side of the road, as they should be, in the so-called "door zone." The door zone designates the space in which a bicyclist is at risk of colliding with the driver’s side door of a parked vehicle that is suddenly flung open - this describes the first scenario. The second scenario involves a bicyclist getting hit by the passenger side door of a stopped vehicle. This situation comes up very rarely in comparison to the first one.
What are the Dangers of Car Door Bicycle Accidents?
The sudden and unpredictable nature of these accidents can lend themselves to creating extremely dangerous situations for bicyclists. If a bicyclist does not see an open door in time, they may crash into the door at a relatively high speed and get thrown from their bikes. Even worse, they may reflexively swerve out of the way of the door and into traffic, getting hit by a motor vehicle in the process.
It is not uncommon for victims of car door accidents to suffer traumatic brain injuries, annular tears, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and other minor or major injuries. Some even lose their lives. In fact, getting doored itself does not usually lead to a fatality; rather, severe or fatal car door accident injuries are sustained in the moment when a bicyclist swerves to avoid the door but gets hit by a motor vehicle.
How Can I Avoid a Collision with a Car Door While Biking?
It is best for bicyclists to ride defensively and take preventative measures to lower the risk of being involved in a car door crash. They should avoid the door zone by leaving enough space between them and the parked cars on the right, even if that means slightly obstructing the vehicle lane to the left; bicyclists can do this because they have the right of way. If you cannot get out of the door zone, you should always look for occupants in the vehicles ahead. Brace yourself when you see someone in the driver’s seat; he or she may open the door suddenly.
Of course, it is never your fault if you do end up getting doored. It is the responsibility of the vehicle’s occupant to check for bicyclists before opening the door. Failure to do so can constitute an act of negligence. If you have suffered significant damages in a car door bicycle collision, you may be entitled to compensation that’ll cover past and future medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
Where Can I Find a Dependable New Jersey Bike Dooring Accident Lawyer?
At Lependorf & Silverstein, P.C., not only do our New Jersey bike accident attorneys provide quality legal representation for our clients, but we also maintain open channels of communication so our clients know where they stand and what happens next. One of the primary features of a successful legal case is a good client-attorney relationship, and we make sure that it remains one of our top priorities. To learn more about what our compassionate legal team can do for you, call us today at (609) 240-0040 for a free, comprehensive consultation.
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