There are more than enough obvious dangers facing cyclists in New York City. Perhaps unsurprisingly, there are plenty of non-obvious accidents waiting to happen as well. One of these occurred over the weekend in Brooklyn, when a woman biking on the street was struck by a swinging car door and launched from her bike into an oncoming public bus.
Witnesses reported that the woman getting out of her car never even realized that she had hit the cyclist. Police questioned the driver, but no criminal charges are set to be filed at this time.
The fatal accident could have been prevented, to be sure, but it was also one of those split-second circumstances in which one finds him or herself in the wrong place at exactly the wrong time. If the biker had been five seconds earlier or later, the accident would never have happened. The same goes for the driver.
Compared to New York’s record of cyclist death and injury on account of moving vehicles, it seems like parked cars and trucks would pose little threat. However, on the road – whether you’re moving or not – it is extremely important to stay alert and aware of what’s around you.
Drivers cannot account for circumstance. There was nothing that could have warned the driver that she would be better off leaving one minute earlier or later.
However, had she checked her rear view and side view mirrors to make sure that there were no bikers, pedestrians, or even other cars approaching, the accident might also have been avoided.