Hit While Riding My Bike by a Car Making a Right Turn...

by Dawn
(Corvallis, OR, USA)

I was riding my bike in the in the bike lane of a street, traveling north bound when a vehicle turned right to get into a store parking lot and struck me on my bike. I chipped my right ankle bone and bruised the left side of my leg from my hip to my ankle.

Is the vehicle driver 100% at fault here for making the right turn? How much should I expect from the insurance company? Thanks.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Hit While Riding My Bike by a Car Making a Right Turn...":

Dawn (Corvallis, OR, USA):

You state you were “riding my bike in the bike lane of a street, traveling north bound when a vehicle turned right”.

From the facts you present it is difficult to know if the driver was adjacent to you or heading in the opposite direction when the collision occurred. Without that information it would be difficult to conclude who was at fault.

We did some research though and found Oregon State Bill 108. This Bill, “allows a driver to pass a bicyclist only on the left and at a safe distance from the cyclist.”

The Bill goes on to define a safe distance as “a distance sufficient to prevent contact between the vehicle and the cyclist if the cyclist were to fall into the driver’s lane of travel.”

This rule does not apply when a driver is traveling in a lane adjacent to a designated bicycle lane, on roads with a speed less than 35 mph, or when the cyclist is turning left.

If it is determined the bicyclist was a “vulnerable person” and the actions of the driver were flagrant and in reckless disregard for the safety of the bicyclist, Oregon State Bill 3314 requires a court to:

“sentence a person convicted of this action to complete a traffic safety course, perform 100 to 200 hours of community service, pay a fine of up to $12,500, and suspension of driving privileges for one year. Payment of the fine and suspension of driving privileges may be waived by the court upon completion of the traffic safety course and community service.”

If you can prove the driver violated Oregon State Law you may be in a position to recover damages from him.

The amount of an insurance settlement is dependent upon the amount of medical bills you sustained as a result of the collision. Although the driver’s actions may have been negligent, without medical bills you will probably not be able to settle the case for very much.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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Oregon Law...
by: Vernon Huffman

Check these citations from the Oregon Vehicle Code (ORS):

§ 811.050 Failure to yield to rider on bicycle lane

§ 811.060 Vehicular assault of bicyclist or pedestrian

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