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How may the Dutch Reach help prevent auto-bicycle accidents?

Collisions between bicycles and cars happen in a number of ways, but one of the more common and dangerous scenarios that can lead to bicycle accidents is dooring. Dooring happens when a driver parallel parks their car and then opens their door into the road and into the path of a bicyclist. While only the bicyclist is moving in a dooring accident, the results can be devastating and even deadly.

Kentucky residents may have heard of an initiative to prevent these tragic occurrences. Termed the “Dutch Reach,” this practice involves the use of a driver’s inside arm and hand to open their door. When a driver uses their right hand and body to open their door, they must swivel their entire body to the left and can look over their left shoulder to see if a bike is coming.

The Dutch Reach also limits how far a person can open their door and thus may give a bicyclist an opportunity to maneuver around an opening door before slamming into it. While the Dutch Reach is not a mandatory practice, it is a common sense approach to preventing tragic bike accidents and causing victims extensive pain and suffering.

Aside from dooring, bike accidents happen when drivers let distractions affect their focus, when individuals exceed posted speed limits, when people make reckless decisions behind the wheels of their cars, and many other situations. The injuries and losses that a victim may suffer in an auto-bike accident can be life-altering and next to impossible to recover from. These victims may choose to seek legal guidance to better understand their rights and options for seeking compensation for their damages.