Male cyclist driving up mountain road

Common Bicycle Accidents Drivers & Cyclists Need to Know

August 16, 2019

Bicycling is a hobby for some of us and a lifestyle for others. Bike accidents, however, put a real cramp in the fun factor. It’s worse when those accidents involve a motor vehicle, because the likelihood of injury to the bicyclist dramatically increases in these situations.

We tend to see these accidents occur when the driver’s attention is not on their immediate surroundings, or sometimes simply by failing to yield the right of way. Here’s a sample of common bicycle-auto collisions that bicyclists and drivers should be aware of.

Vehicle crossing into a bicyclist’s lane of travel

An automobile comes to an intersection ahead of a bicyclist, on the right. Whether they’re going straight or left, they intend to cross the bicyclist’s path. If they’re turning right, they mean to join the bicyclist’s lane.

Should the driver fail to notice the oncoming biker, it is possible they’ll enter the lane without yielding the right of way to the bicyclist.

Vehicle turning left in front of oncoming bicycle

All left turns are problematic from a traffic control and civil engineering perspective, and many cities are favoring roundabouts to eliminate the need to breach the lane of oncoming traffic.

When a vehicle traveling in the opposite direction of a bicyclist makes a left turn in front of them, there are several points of impact to be wary of. Sometimes there is the possibility of striking the left flank of the bicyclist. Other times, the cutoff forces the biker to impact the right side of the vehicle.

Vehicle rear-ending a bicycle

This is by far the worst kind of accident a cyclist could potentially face. Bicyclists site this as the most concerning type of auto-related accident, and the reports concerning resulting injuries and deaths justify their fear.

When automobiles rear-end bicycles, it is usually found that the operator was under the influence of drugs or alcohol or otherwise mentally compromised, such as through lack of sleep. 

Vehicle door opening in path of oncoming bicyclist

Commonly referred to as getting “doored,” this may be the most common type of bicycle-auto accident. It occurs when a person exits a parked car without looking at the oncoming lane of traffic and opens their door in front of an oncoming bicyclist. A simple moment of negligence on the part of the vehicle driver or one of its passengers can cause great harm to a bicyclist.

We Can Help

If you or someone you love has recently been in a bicycle accident, there may be help for you. You’re going to need an experienced personal injury law team on your side to guarantee the best outcome for your situation.

Hall Law is highly experienced at handling cases related to injuries sustained from serious bicycle accidents caused by driver inattentiveness or negligence. We are here for you to answer your questions and discuss your options.