Stationary cars and buses can cause no end of problems for cyclists.
Whether it's parking in bike lanes, pulling out as we’re passing, or swinging a door into an unsuspecting cyclist’s path, these hazards can be all the more dangerous because they’re so unexpected.
Because hitting a stationary vehicle tends to bring you to a hard stop, an accident with a stationary or emerging vehicle can cause nasty injuries too.
If you’re injured by someone in a stationary vehicle, at Cycling Lawyer we know how to make sure your claim is successful.
Can I claim if someone opens a car door into me?
Yes, you can claim against someone who opens a door into your path. Like when driving, opening a door is a manoeuvre and they have to make sure it’s safe before they do it. Happily, the law considers getting in and out of your car to be part of driving so you can make a claim just is if the person hit you with their car when they were driving it.
What if someone’s parked on a cycle lane and I have an accident when avoiding it?
This is a bit trickier though you may still succeed if they can be shown to have created a hazard which could not be safely passed, even by a reasonably competent and careful cyclist, such as if it obscured your view on a blind bend.
Can I claim if a parked car pulls out as I’m passing?
The driver of a parked vehicle has to check its clear to pull away so, if this causes an accident, you will have a claim. It doesn’t matter if you’re filtering at the time and as a cyclist, you’re as entitled to be there as anyone else. If the car was indicating before it pulled out, then the diver’s insurance may try to allege contributory negligence but this shouldn’t succeed as long as you’re fully established in the road.
What about obstacles in a bus lane?
The main obstacles in bus lanes are often buses and because they have dedicated lanes which they mostly fill, they don’t always check before they pull away from stops. This can cause an issue if you’re filtering past that bus at that time.
You are entitled to filter past stopped buses, and as with passing a car on a normal road, the bus driver has to check its clear rather than assume the bus always has right of way. You should note that a key point here is whether the bus was indicating on your approach to it as this would mean you shouldn’t try to filter past it.
How do I prove it?
Most people these days have a mobile phone in their pocket and it’s the best evidence gathering device there is. Take lots of photos making sure you identify the vehicle’s registration plate, its position, and any sight lines it may be obscuring if that’s relevant.
Witnesses will be really useful, so take any names and contact details that you can. It's also worth calling the police particularly if you’ve been injured or if your bike is damaged.
How do I start my claim?
It’s simple. Call one of our specialist solicitors today for a no-obligation chat and we’ll tell you whether you have a no-win, no-fee claim. If you do then say the word and we’ll do the rest.