What to Know About Dooring Accidents in Florida

Contact Us Today!

Dooring accidents can be devastating. If you were injured in one, you may qualify for compensation. Our skilled St. Petersburg auto accident attorneys are on your side.

What are dooring accidents?

A dooring accident occurs when the door of a standing motor vehicle opens in the path of an unwary pedestrian, cyclist, or motorcyclist, resulting in them flipping over, falling down, or swerving into oncoming traffic as they try to dodge being hit. Most dooring accidents are non-fatal, however, they can still result in serious or fatal injuries.

Traffic laws typically need motor vehicle drivers and passengers to watch for pedestrians and cyclists in the area before entering or exiting their vehicles. However, it’s not uncommon for busy people to open their vehicle doors without thinking and without checking whether someone is in their way.

Sometimes poor road engineering results in bike lanes that are built within the door zone, exposing cyclists to dangerous obstacles in their path. The door zone of a parked motor vehicle may be defined as the roughly 5 feet of space where a pedestrian or cyclist faces the highest likelihood of being hit.

The size of the door zone can vary relying on the size of the parked motor vehicle. Even the most qualified of cyclists might find it challenging to react sufficiently quickly to avoid being hit by the sudden door movement. Many cyclists run the risk of colliding with the oncoming traffic while trying to dodge a car door unexpectedly opening in front of them.

What kinds of injuries can be endured because of a dooring accident?

When it comes to one-way streets, dooring can involve a front or rear car passenger suddenly opening a door. Even though all city cyclists are aware and fearful of these accidents, getting doored even at relatively low speeds can cause a cyclist to be flipped over their bicycle’s handlebars and may result in serious injuries. Dooring accidents can result in injuries that are considered catastrophic, including the following:

  • Nerve damage
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Multiple fractures that may need surgery
  • Organ damage

What compensation can be recovered from a dooring accident?

If you were injured in a dooring accident, if you are able to prove the negligence of a motorist or passenger in opening a vehicle door, you can be legally eligible for damages, including the following:

  • Permanent disability
  • Pain and suffering
  • Current medical treatment bills and medical treatment expenses you may reasonably expect to incur in the future
  • Current lost earnings and earnings you may reasonably expect to lose in the future
  • Permanent disfigurement
  • Funeral and burial expenses in case the accident results in a wrongful death