common bicycle accidents

Bicyclists present inconspicuous profiles in traffic and are more prone to very serious injuries if they are involved in an accident with a car or other vehicle. Bicyclists don’t have the body of a car around them to protect them, and they don’t have the benefit of safety features such as airbags and seatbelts. There are some common bicycle accidents including:

Dooring Accidents

These occur when a bicyclist runs into a car door that has opened into their path. These accidents commonly happen on busy streets with heavy traffic that requires cyclists to ride closer to parked cars. Drivers have a responsibility to check the area around them before opening their doors into traffic. New York law prohibits people from opening car doors until it is safe to do so and doors should not be left open longer than necessary. In New York City, under NYCRR section 4-12(c), people are not permitted to get out of a vehicle on the traffic side in a way that would interfere with bicyclists.

Side Swiping

This occurs when a driver fails to give a bicyclist enough room when passing. Drivers have a responsibility to give cyclists plenty of room when they overtake them on the street.


Drivers who rear-end bicyclists are typically distracted while driving or following the cyclist too closely. This commonly happens at stop signs or when a cyclist slows down to make a turn.

Crossing in Front of the Bike

“Right cross” or “left cross” accidents occur when a driver crosses into a bicyclist’s path at an intersection or when coming out of a driveway or parking lot. In these cases, the bike is already in the intersection when the car is pulling across. Drivers are typically not paying attention to their surroundings or unable to see the cyclist when they pull out into the intersection or street.

Drivers Turning into Bicycles on Their Right Side

If a bike is to the right of a car when the car is performing a right turn, the cyclist can be hooked by the vehicle. Distracted drivers and drivers who do not check their blind spots can easily cause such an accident.

Contact an Experienced Attorney

If you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident, you should have an experienced personal injury attorney evaluated your case. At Bonina & Bonina, P.C., we have over 50 years of experience helping injured New Yorkers. Contact us online or call us at 1-888-MEDLAW1 to schedule your free consultation. Home and hospital visits are available. Se habla español.