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Raising Awareness for Car Door Safety: Protecting Cyclists on the Road

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Every day, cyclists face the risk of being injured or worse when motorists fail to take into account their safety. With 35% of drivers on the road admitting they don’t look for cyclists before opening their car door, it’s clear that car-door collision awareness needs to be raised.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss how car door safety can prevent serious injuries for cyclists and share ways you can become an advocate for safer roads.

The Dangers of Car Doors Opening Unexpectedly & Accidentally Striking Cyclists

One of the biggest dangers cyclists face when riding on roads is the risk of being struck by a person opening door unexpectedly. This type of accident, known as “dooring”, often occurs when a driver or passenger opens their car door without checking for cyclists coming in the other direction.

What are the consequences of a car door opening?

When a car door opens unexpectedly and strikes a cyclist, the consequences can be devastating. The most serious injuries that can result from dooring include broken bones, head trauma, spinal cord damage, even death. Other less severe but still concerning long-term effects may include permanent disability or disfigurement due to scarring from the impact.

Common Causes of Car Door-Related Injuries

The most common causes of car door-related injuries can be attributed to drivers and passengers not properly monitoring their surroundings and failing to check their rearview mirrors. This often means that they don’t pay attention to bicyclists coming in the opposite direction, which can lead to accidents.

With more cyclists on the road than ever, it’s important that motorists take care to look for them before opening their car doors.

Strategies for Drivers to Promote Safety on the Road

There are several ways drivers can implement to promote safety on the road for cyclists, including:

  • Always look out for cyclists before opening your car door.
  • Allow plenty of space between your car and cyclists on the road.
  • Make sure your passengers understand the importance of checking behind them before they exit the vehicle.
  • If you’re in a car park or other confined area, open the door slowly and cautiously to avoid hitting any cyclists.
  • Use the ‘Dutch Reach’ when exiting the vehicle – this is a technique where you reach across your body with the farthest hand to open the door, which allows you to turn and look behind your car before opening it.


Be An Advocate for Cycling Safety

In addition to these strategies, drivers can also help to raise awareness for car door safety by talking to their friends and family about the importance of being aware of cyclists on the road.

They can also share information on social media and other outlets to spread the word, and connect with local cycling advocacy groups to help create safer roads for cyclists.

Tips for Cyclists to Stay Safe Around Open Vehicle Doors

Cyclists can also take steps to protect themselves from car door accidents by following these tips:

  • Be aware of your surroundings when cycling near vehicles.
  • Ride in the middle of a lane, rather than close to parked vehicles.
  • Always look over your shoulder before passing parked cars or slowing down.
  • Wear a helmet and other protective gear to reduce the chance of injury if you’re struck by an open door.



Car door accidents are dangerous and can cause serious injuries and even death to cyclists. By educating both drivers and cyclists on best practises for car door safety, we can help to reduce the risk of these accidents occurring. Drivers should be aware of their surroundings when they open their vehicle doors, while cyclists should also stay alert and maintain a safe distance from parked vehicles.

If you’ve experienced a bicycle injury due to a person opening door, you could be entitled to personal injury compensation. At Cycle SOS, our expert team of solicitors can offer a range of services, such as expert legal consultation, support in negotiating settlements, and recovery of medical expenses and loss of earnings.

To learn more about our services or how to start your claim, call 0808 100 9995 and speak to one of our specialist solicitors. We’re here to help. You can email us or schedule a callback.

Written By:

Cycle SOS
Cycle SOS only deal with cycle accident claims. We understand cyclists, and believe that cyclists have the right to be safe on the roads. Cycle SOS The Cyclists National Helpline is made up of a highly trained team of specialist personal injury cycling lawyers that have recovered millions of pounds for people making bicycle accident claims.