Our law firm has obtained a substantial settlement for a bicyclist doored along North Milwaukee Avenue on August 10, 2010. The incident occurred at around 10:00 a.m. while our client was commuting to work in Milwaukee Avenue's southbound dedicated bike lane. When he reached the 1300 block of Milwaukee, near the intersection with North Paulina Street, a motorist, whose Ford Windstar was stopped along the right hand curb, suddenly opened his door without looking for traffic in the bike lane. The bicyclist tried to avoid a collision but his right hand struck the door causing him to crash and sustain a knuckle fracture along with numerous bumps and bruises.
Successful resolution of this matter required educating the motorist's out-of-state insurer, Geico, regarding both Illinois law and Chicago ordinance in place to protect bicyclists from dooring incidents. Illinois statute 735 ILCS 5/11-1407 and Chicago Municipal Code 9-80-035 prohibit persons from opening vehicle doors unless it is reasonably safe to do so.