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How can motorists avoid dooring accidents?

On Behalf of | Dec 30, 2023 | Personal Injury |

If you ride on two wheels, be that a motorcycle, moped, scooter, e-bike or bicycle, you know just how dangerous a car door can be.

Many drivers and passengers, however, have no idea of the damage they could do when opening the door. They probably never even give it a second thought – and that is where the problem lies. 

Dooring can cause serious injury or death

If someone opens a door into the path of someone on two wheels, it will likely knock the rider down. If the fall itself does not harm them, then another vehicle whose path they land in might.

The solution is simple

All drivers and passengers have to do is check it is safe to open their doors before doing so. That’s it. Yet, with so many failing to do this, safety experts suggest a different approach. Teaching people how to open doors differently will increase the chance that they do look for two-wheelers coming up alongside them.

The method many U.S. driving schools now teach is known as the Dutch Reach because it originated in the Netherlands, where cycling takes far greater precedence in road planning than here in the U.S. While designed to protect cyclists, it is equally effective for those with motors on their two-wheelers.

Simply open the door with the inside hand rather than the customary outside hand. By doing so, you rotate your body backward, making it harder to miss anyone approaching alongside from behind.

Every road user has a duty of care toward other road users, and failing to open a door with sufficient care could be construed as negligence. Getting help to show this will be crucial to claim compensation if someone inside a vehicle knocks you from yours when opening their door.