Second Driver Who Struck Dooring Victim Thrown Into His Path Cannot Escape Liability

Adm White won an appellate ruling that a driver who strikes a doored cyclist that had been thrown into his path cannot rely on the “emergency doctrine” to escape liability for the second collision.  The cyclist received compensation from the owner of the vehicle that doored her, but the second vehicle that struck her after the dooring sought to be dismissed on the grounds that only two to three seconds were available to avoid the crash.  The trial court held that there were issues presented for the jury, such as whether the operator of the vehicle had been following the cyclist too closely, or moving too fast.  The Second Department of the Appellate Division, New York State Supreme Court, affirmed the trial court’s decision, holding that the driver “failed to demonstrate…whether his actions were reasonable and prudent under the circumstances.”

The full decision is available here.