Friday, August 15, 2014

Bicyclist Doored in Riverside Receives Insurance Settlement

Location in Riverside, IL where a bicyclist was doored. Illinois bike attorneys at Keating Law Offices helped secure an insurance settlement for the doored bicyclist who was injured in the crash.
Illinois Bicycle Lawyer Joe Vietri secured an insurance settlement for a bicyclist who was the victim of a dooring in Riverside last June. The dooring occurred on East Burlington Street near its intersection with Longcommon Road. This location in Riverside is often very congested because it is located near Riverside's village center and the local Metra stop.

The dooring occurred as the bicyclist road eastbound on Burlington at the same time that a driver of a parked vehicle suddenly opened his door directly into the bicyclist’s path. With absolutely no time to react, the bicyclist crashed into the door and landed directly on the pavement. The bicyclist sustained severe injuries and was immediately transported to the emergency room with lower back and hip injuries.

This dooring is a violation of the Illinois law that prohibits motorists from opening their car doors into the path of traffic. Illinois law is very clear regarding a motorist’s duty to carefully avoid dooring a bicyclist. Section 11-1407 of the Illinois Vehicle Code states:
"No person shall open the door of a vehicle on the side available to moving traffic unless and until it is reasonably safe to do so, and can be done without interfering with the movement of other traffic, nor shall any person leave a door open on the side of a vehicle available to moving traffic for a period of time longer than necessary to load or unload passengers."
The Illinois Bicycle Lawyers made a claim with the driver’s insurance carrier for the bicyclist’s injuries, medical bills, pain and suffering, and loss of a normal life. As we have mentioned in previous blog posts, “loss of a normal life” is a compensable damage in Illinois that is defined as “the temporary or permanent diminished ability to enjoy life,” and “includes a person’s inability to pursue the pleasurable aspects of life.” As a result of this dooring, the bicyclist suffered very significant loss of a normal life. Before the crash, he was a man who led an active and independent life, spending much of his time bicycling and caring for others. After the crash, however, he was unable to complete the most routine, daily activities—he had to rely on the assistance of others and was entirely unable to lead his usually active lifestyle.

This bicyclist’s case is a good example of how compensation from an insurance company involves much more than repayment of a patient’s medical bills; the lasting effects of being the victim of a crash often reach much further than the emergency room door, and compensation for loss of normal life can help.

If you have any questions regarding this post or an issue involving Illinois personal injury law, contact Illinois Bicycle Attorney Mike Keating at 312-208-7702 or 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All e-mails and phone calls are returned promptly. All initial consultations are confidential and free.