Doctor Touts Benefits of ‘Dutch Reach’ to Save Lives of Bicyclists

bike laneOne of the dangers of riding a bicycle in an area where people parallel park their cars is that cyclists are in danger of being hit by drivers’ car doors when they open them. In fact, a Somerville, Massachusetts woman recently died when she ran into a car door while on her bicycle.

That is why Dr. Michael Charney wants drivers to do what he calls the “Dutch Reach” when opening their car doors.

This is a maneuver mandated by law in the Netherlands that requires drivers use the hand farthest away from the door to open it. By opening the door this way, drivers are forced to turn their bodies so they are looking directly out the window, making it more likely that they will see approaching bicyclists.

More Bicycle Safety Tips

While there are things drivers can do to prevent injuries to bicyclists, riders themselves should follow some simple safety tips to avoid getting hurt, including:

  • Always wear a helmet and make sure it fits properly
  • Use lights when riding at night or in conditions with less visibility
  • Use hand signals and make eye contact with drivers so they know where you are going
  • Watch for obstacles in your path
  • Ride with traffic not against it
  • Stick to the patterns of other drivers and avoid weaving through traffic
  • Do not talk on the phone or listen to music
  • Make sure your brakes work
  • Follow all traffic laws
  • Always have at least one hand on the handlebars
  • Carry books and other belongings in a backpack or bicycle carrier

If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a bicycle accident involving a car, contact the car accident lawyers in Sacramento at the Arnold Law Firm to find out if you are entitled to compensation.

Our injury attorneys offer a free consultation and do not charge any legal fees unless we recover compensation for our clients.

Call (916) 777-7777 right now or complete a Free Case Evaluation form