Regardless of rules, legal consequence or legislation, what will ultimately protect lives and improve the road-sharing experience is vigilance and education. In our profession we see too many people that have suffered an injury that changes their life forever.
Toronto’s traffic warrant system is currently under review with a new report to be released sometime late this year or early 2018. This system houses the policies that determine which roads and intersections are recommended for road safety measures, such as crosswalks, stop lights or stop signs. Its results can dramatically affect road safety measures across the city.
But no amount of safety measures will replace self-awareness. Whether you’re in control of the thousand-pound truck or the twenty-pound bike, your ability to react quickly has very big impact.
The reverse onus rule:
In most cycling accident cases, the reverse onus clause puts responsibility on the driver. In these situations, a driver would remain responsible to prove that he or she was not acting negligent in any way that contributed to the accident.
A metre matters. Whether cyclists or driver, it is crucial to keeping the 1 metre distance rule in mind. Situations on the road can change in a millisecond; the greater the distance between cars and cyclists, the more time to react and prevent an accident.
The risky right turn:
The simple act of turning right is one of the most common collisions between drivers and cyclists.
Cyclists should stay far enough behind or ahead of vehicles to ensure visibility. Additionally, they should never try to pass right-turning drivers on the right.
Drivers, on the other hand, must come to a complete stop and check their side-view mirror and blind spot before proceeding with the turn.
The unexpected car:
Many collisions with cyclists occur when a driver is exiting a hidden lane onto upcoming traffic and fails to see the cyclist approaching.
Cyclists should slow down when passing certain laneways, such as parking lot entrances. Drivers should look both left and right, while slowly increasing speed, before exiting the lane.
These are just a few of the common collisions between cyclists and drivers in our city. Awareness and education can make the difference.
For more tips to cycle safe, click here. Should you have any questions about bicycle safety or motor vehicle accidents involving cyclists, please feel free to contact Steven Arie Glowinsky at (416) 734-0431.