The Chainlink

Chicago ‘Dooring’ Reports Saw Steep Increase in 2015, Data Shows

Crash data for 2015 released this week by the Illinois Department of Transportation shows a steep increase in the number of reported “doorings” in Chicago – collisions that occur when the door of a parked vehicle is opened directly in the path of an oncoming cyclist.

In 2014, there were 202 reports of dooring incidents. That figure rose to 302 in 2015, according IDOT.

The department has been collecting data on doorings in Chicago since 2011, and says that the number of reported incidents had been decreasing steadily – until 2015.

For the full article go here.

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re: 2015 THANKS A LOT IDOT! /s

So what do you do when you are doored? Call the police? What if it's a uber driver or taxi? Who's responsible?

Whatever driver doors you is responsible. Call 911 every time. With Taxis there's an added layer of protection. Once you file a police report, you can then call 311 and use your incident report to specifically report that driver and cab number and their license will be reviewed and sometimes suspended with an eventual resolution that can involve a longer suspension, revocation of the license entirely and they usually heavily fined and have to be re-trained at their own expense. When I got rear-ended with little visible harm to me and my bike, the guy was put off the street for 6 months.

 

I always see cyclist riding right next to parked cars. Always makes me cringe and drives me crazy. I'm sure some are new riders, but the majority are not. I guess people are just not sure where to safely ride, or maybe they just don't have the confidence to take and hold the lane outside the door zone.

I generally stay outside the door zone, or proceed slowly if I am forced to pass near parked cars.  But avoiding dooring is not always simple.  On the right side, you have drivers who fling doors open without looking.  On the left, you have drivers who think we're just being inconsiderate louts.  Why are we riding "in their way" when we could ride closer to the parked cars?  Sometimes those drivers pass very, very close - perhaps to "teach the bike rider a lesson".  This might be why some bike riders choose to stay close to parked cars.

This problem, like almost all conflicts between bike riders and drivers, arises because so few drivers also ride bicycles.  They just don't understand all the ways that they routinely put us in danger.  They don't understand how difficult it is to defend ourselves against their carelessness, impatience, and selfishness.  As a very experienced city driver, the one thing that I have learned is that most dangerous situations can be averted by calming down, and slowing down.  I'm amazed how few drivers realize that.

What scares me more than anything and will probably be my ultimate demise is the rash of uber passengers (never seemed to be an issue with cabs maybe because people had to pay first?) exiting from any door while the car is in an active lane stopped in traffic. You have to choose which door zone you want to take your chances with.  

This morning while walking on Washington at Wacker from the Metra I heard somebody exclaim, "Oh my God!"  I turned to see a cycling commuter in the bike lane reacting  to a taxi that had its right rear door open into the bike lane and a besuited passenger disembarking into the lane. The passenger looked with innocence and the cyclist, miffed, but uninjured, reacted but without cursing. He then  rode on. I looked at the passenger from the sidewalk and said, "Dude, you have to look." He looked at me as if I was asking him to solve a math equation. The passenger is in a tough spot here but it is a bike  lane and he has to be on the lookout. I think the cab driver has to be looking in the passenger side mirror to warn his/her passenger of bikes.  A near miss and life goes on. It is unknown if anybody from the cab learned something that will save the life or limb of the next rider they encounter.  The cyclist did nothing wrong as he pedaled in the lane. 

My friend Dale's dooring on Sat.  Some scrapes and a mild concussion even with helmet.  Guy behind, Joe, almost got taken out too. Regretfully, this one will presumably go unreported as the police were not called and no contact info was exchanged as I understand it. His rearview camera view:

https://www.facebook.com/dale.woods.102/posts/10154838217098155

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