Bicyclists have to deal with more hazards on the road than most other people. Not only do they face constant dangers from moving vehicles, but they even face potential hazards from parked vehicles sometimes, too.
This comes in the form of dooring, a problem that affects any street that cars and bicyclists have to share.
What is a dooring incident?
We Love Cycling discusses the safety issues caused by dooring. Dooring is a situation in which a driver opens their door directly into the path of a cyclist, unaware of their presence. They often do so without leaving enough time for the cyclist to safely swerve and avoid the door, resulting in the cyclist slamming into the door often at the speed they were traveling before.
This can either jettison them over the door, or it can even knock them into oncoming traffic which may not have enough time to react appropriately before hitting them.
How can one prevent dooring?
It is possible to prevent dooring incidents as both a driver and a cyclist. First, cyclists should maintain a distance of about a door’s length from all vehicles wherever possible. Unfortunately, it is impossible to tell if someone will open their door, so it is best to just treat it as a possibility from every car.
Vehicles can also park as far away from bike lanes as possible. On top of that, they should always check before opening their door to ensure that a cyclist is not approaching from behind. These simple actions and checks can potentially save a cyclist’s life or prevent them from suffering undue injury.