By
Pace Law

Should Cyclist Be Treated More Like Motorists? Food For Thought

April 13, 2018

According to Statistics Canada over the past two decades, commuter population in metropolitan areas increased by 35.9 per cent. During this time, the number of people using a bicycle to commute nearly doubled.

As city traffic worsens, costs increase and environmental concerns take on more importance in society; more and more commuters are seeking alternative methods to travel, with many turning to cycling as their primary method of transportation to and from work.

Since one goal of the city of Toronto is for bicycles and cars to share the road, many are thinking about the best and safest way to implement this transition. A big question that arises is that since both cars and bicycles are involved in road accidents which can lead to fatalities, should they not have to follow similar rules of engagement?

Specifically, should there be a licensing requirement for cyclists, provided only after road and personal safety rules were demonstrated? Should bikes be required to undergo safety inspections, similar to car safety standard emissions tests? Should there be laws against distracted cycling? Currently there are no laws against cycling while on the phone while listening to music with headphones. However, these behaviours are dangerous and can result in injury and accidents.

What about insurance? Finding insurance for cyclists would be the toughest part of this debate. Motorists are entitled to access accident benefits – ordinarily by way of the insurer of the subject motor vehicle or the insurer of the motorist (if insured on another vehicle). When a cyclist has an accident with a moving (or parked) vehicle, the cyclist may access the insurance policy associated with that vehicle in order to claim accident benefits, regardless of fault.

What happens, however, when no car is involved in a cycling accident and therefore no insurance is accessible? That would be the case if a cyclists simply falls or if two cyclists collide. One thought would be to have an equivalent of accident benefits tied to home owners insurance. But what if a person does not own a home? Another thought would be to compel cyclists to insure their bicycles?  That mechanism would, however, be far from ideal.

There is a huge spectrum of possibilities for answering these questions. On the far right these regulations would be mandatory with cyclists paying for the services, moving into the middle with subsidized regulations and services, and to the far left with no mandatory regulations.

There are definitely more questions than answers in this area and progress towards finding solutions can’t come fast enough.

Steven Arie Glowinsky is a personal injury lawyer who represents both cyclists and motor vehicle drivers who suffered serious injuries as a result of an accident. For more information, he can be reached at  or (416) 734-0431.

Share This Post
Email
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter
Trending Posts
Read More Insights
Events
By
Pace Law
Pace Law Firm is always looking to expand our business and elevate it to the next level. On Thursday November 24th, Pace Law Firm attended the Canadian Mortgage Summit (CMS) to hear from the industry’s top mortgage brokers, lenders and solution providers.
Firm News
By
Pace Law
We are proud to announce that Pace Law has become a multi-service firm and is launching a new website to accommodate our growth in different areas of law!
Events
By
Pace Law
The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation takes place on September 30th for the second consecutive year. Each year, September 30th marks both Orange Shirt Day and National Day for Truth and Reconciliation.
Real Estate Law
By
Pace Law
In key Canadian cities, the housing inventory may reach a crisis stage, according to a recent analysis from RE/MAX Canada. The analysis confirms that governments must take quick action to address the critically low supply of available homes.
Personal Injury
By
Pace Law
As the winter months get closer, it is critical to plan ahead and take precautions as needed to reduce the likelihood of mishaps. Nearly 30% of all motor vehicle incidents, according to recent RCMP data, happened on slick, snowy, or icy roadways.
Real Estate Law
By
Pace Law
Two weeks after the provincial administration submitted Bill 109, the More Homes for Everyone Act, 2022, on March 30, 2022, it obtained royal assent on April 14. The last step needed for a legislative measure to become law is royal assent.

Get in Touch

Call us now or fill out the form to discuss your case with an experienced legal professional.

Our Locations

Office Location

191 The West Mall, Suite 1100
Toronto, ON M9C 5K8
Phone: 1-877-236-3060
Fax: 416-236-1809

Office Location

191 The West Mall, Suite 1100
Toronto, ON M9C 5K8
Phone: 1-877-236-3060
Fax: 416-236-1809

Scroll to Top