Traffic laws in New York apply to all vehicle operators, including cyclists. However, bicycle riders are significantly more vulnerable than occupants of vehicles. For this reason, auto drivers are often urged to look out for cyclists, not only while driving but also when exiting their cars after parking. Not doing so might lead to wrongful death lawsuits.
When car occupants open doors to get out of vehicles without checking for oncoming cyclists, they put the lives of bicycle riders on the line. The danger was underscored by a recent tragic accident that claimed the life of a bicyclist who was just 16 years old. According to a police report, the incident occurred on a recent Wednesday at approximately 5:40 p.m.
An accident report indicates that the cyclist was caught unawares by a car door that opened as he rode down a Brooklyn street. He could not avoid smashing into the door, and he was thrown from the bicycle into the street. The injured cyclist landed directly in the path of a box truck that was passing the scene at that moment. The teenager was rushed to a hospital, but his life could not be saved.
While no amount of money could ever replace a loved one, surviving family members may obtain financial relief to cover end-of-life expenses and other economic and noneconomic losses through the New York civil justice system. An experienced wrongful death attorney can work to determine whom to name as defendants. In this case, the person who opened the car door might be found to have been the negligent party. Legal counsel can help with establishing negligence and presenting the claim in the court for adjudication of documented claims.