Bicycle vs. Car Door Accidents
Work with Our Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer
One of the most common causes of injury to urban bicycle riders is a collision
with a car door. Usually this is caused by the vehicle’s occupant
not checking to make sure that it is clear before opening the door. This
type of collision is frequently called being “car-doored.”
This can be one of the most difficult accidents for a bicyclist to avoid.
Frequently, if you turn right, you are going to go directly into the car.
If you turn left you would go into traffic. Also the doors can swing open
within just a fraction of a second making braking or otherwise avoiding
the collision impossible.
If you have suffered injury in an accident of this sort, make sure to reach
out to our Columbia personal injury attorneys today.
Schedule your free case evaluation today.
What the South Carolina Statutes Say
South Carolina law is very clear that when a vehicle occupant opens a car
door that they can only do so when it is safe. In fact the legislature
even enacted specific legislation on this topic back in 1978. S.C. Code
§ 56-5-3822 makes it a misdemeanor crime to negligently open up a
car door. When someone is injured as a result of a car door accident,
this law can be used to clearly establish liability (legally called negligence
per se), and can also be used as a basis for punitive damages.
So what type of compensation is a cyclist who is “car-doored”
entitled to? When the accident is substantial, the legal compensation
- Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
- Pain and Suffering
- Disfigurement \ Scar Compensation
- Permanent Impairment
- Punitive Damages
Compensation would be the responsibility of the insurance company for the
owner of the vehicle. The law is also very clear that even in the event
a car door is opened by a small child, or just purely “accidently”,
the insurance company still has legal payment obligations.
If you or a loved one has been injured in any bicycle accident, including
contact our Columbia injury lawyers today for a free, no obligation consultation.