What to Do After a Motorcycle Dooring Accident in Tampa, FloridaGet a Free Consultation
Being doored on a motorcycle is a dangerous accident that can have devastating consequences for a motorcyclist. Here’s what you should do if you’re doored while riding a motorcycle in Tampa, Florida.
In our bustling city of Tampa, the roads are shared by various modes of transportation. Motorcycles provide a thrilling and efficient means of travel, but they also expose riders to unique risks. One such danger that often goes overlooked is the act of opening a car door without proper caution. Few know better about the consequences of a crash than our motorcycle accident attorneys who represent bikers every day. To minimize these accidents it is important for both bikers and non-bikers understand the causes and how to avoid them.
The Danger of “Dooring”
“Dooring” refers to the occurrence when a driver or passenger of a parked car opens their door into the path of an oncoming motorcycle. This seemingly innocuous act can have dire consequences for the motorcyclist. The impact of colliding with an opened car door can lead to severe injuries, property damage, and even fatalities.
A Car Door Can Be a Sudden Obstacle
Motorcyclists travel at higher speeds than pedestrians and bicycles, often sharing the same lanes as motor vehicles. When a car door is unexpectedly opened in their path, motorcyclists have little time to react, resulting in a sudden and unavoidable obstacle. The lack of time to brake or swerve can lead to a devastating collision.
Lack of Space and Time to React
The compact nature of a motorcycle makes it more vulnerable to the dangers posed by an opened car door. Unlike cars, motorcycles lack the protective metal frame and airbags to absorb the impact. The rider is directly exposed to the force of the collision, increasing the likelihood of severe injuries.
Furthermore, motorcycles require less space to maneuver than cars. When a door suddenly swings open, motorcyclists often have insufficient space and time to change lanes or avoid the collision, increasing the risk of a dangerous crash.
Serious Injuries Caused by Hitting a Car Door on a Motorcycle
The consequences of a motorcycle colliding with an opened car door can be devastating. Motorcyclists may be thrown from their bikes, impacting the door, the car itself, or the road surface. Common injuries resulting from these collisions include:
- Fractures and Bone Injuries: The impact of the collision can cause fractures to the motorcyclist’s limbs, ribs, or spine. These injuries often require extensive medical treatment, rehabilitation, and can result in long-term disabilities.
- Head and Brain Injuries: Without the protective structure of a car, motorcyclists are at a higher risk of sustaining head injuries. Traumatic brain injuries, concussions, and skull fractures can have long-lasting effects on cognitive abilities, motor functions, and overall quality of life.
- Soft Tissue Injuries: The force of the impact can lead to severe soft tissue injuries, including deep cuts, lacerations, and internal organ damage. These injuries may require emergency medical intervention and extensive surgeries.
Legal Responsibility When a Motorcycle Rider is Doored
In situations where a motorcyclist is injured due to a dooring incident, determining liability becomes crucial. Florida law places the responsibility on the person opening the car door to do so safely and without endangering others on the road. Negligence on the part of the driver or passenger in opening the door without checking for oncoming traffic can result in legal consequences and financial liability. Of course if the operator of the motorcycle is speeding or driving in an unauthorized area, such as the sidewalk, the biker may share or be entirely responsible for the crash and subsequent damages.
However, you should never assume a motorcycle accident is your fault, it’s always best to get a professional opinion. If you are involved in a motorcycle accident in Brandon, Tampa, or anywhere in the Tampa Bay area and are injured you should call our office today. Vanguard Attorneys offers free no cost and no obligation consultations, contact us today to schedule a meeting today.
Dooring Prevention and Safety Measures
To minimize the risk of dooring incidents and protect the safety of motorcyclists, several preventive measures can be taken:
Awareness and Education
Motor vehicle drivers should be educated about the vulnerability of motorcyclists and the importance of checking for oncoming traffic before opening car doors. This awareness can help foster a safer environment for all road users.
Use of Side Mirrors
Drivers should utilize their side mirrors to check for approaching motorcycles before opening car doors. Taking this simple step can help prevent potentially devastating accidents.
“Dutch Reach” Technique
Encouraging the adoption of the “Dutch Reach” technique can also reduce the risk of dooring incidents. This technique involves using the hand furthest from the door (usually the driver’s right hand) to open it. This forces the driver to naturally look over their shoulder, increasing their awareness of approaching traffic.
Opening a car door without proper caution may seem like a minor oversight, but the consequences can be life-altering for motorcyclists. The dangers of dooring incidents include sudden obstacles, limited space to react, and the potential for severe injuries. By raising awareness, promoting education, and encouraging responsible actions, we can work towards creating a safer environment for motorcyclists and preventing the devastating consequences of dooring incidents.
If you do find yourself or a loved one injured in a motorcycle accident you shouldn’t hesitate to a Tampa personal injury lawyer at Vanguard Attorneys and preserve your rights.