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$136M Powerball winner sued for 'dooring' cyclist

Topic closed. 105 replies. Last post 1 year ago by ttech10.

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ttech10's avatar - blobdude
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Posted: June 26, 2015, 1:27 pm - IP Logged

Have to agree here.

ttech, I don't want to fight with you and I hope we can agree to disagree because here is the issue to every single person who's been a driver for more than a day: a motorist can follow every single rule of law to a T and simply be considered at fault because the law says so. 

Remember crash for cash?  The reason that was so successful is because regardless of what the other driver did to cause the crash, the person rearending another vehicle was immediately at fault. You can be driving the designated 15mph in a residential neighborhood, but you're at fault if a kid zips in front of your vehicle and gets hit. Now based on what you're saying, a motorist can be doing everything he's supposed to be doing, but if he injures a cyclist, it's automatically his fault.

Does the cyclist have no responsibility? Either legally or intellectually?

Quite frankly, I don't care what the laws are, I'm not going to be pointing fingers at either party until I know how fast the cyclist was going, if Perosi looked before opening his door, how soon the cyclist sought medical treatment and if he even attempted to have his bills covered through insurance first. I'll tell you something else, if I was on that jury and found out he was traveling too fast to allow sufficient time to stop, I'd make sure he wouldn't get the payout he's so obviously fishing for.

I have no problem with disagreements, just the claiming of one group being 100% correct and the other being 100% in the wrong.

As I said in my last comment (which was posted after you posted yours), there are many, many instances where a motorist causes the death of a cyclist and the driver isn't held accountable for that person's death. They will get a ticket for clearly being in the wrong, but then are basically told that it's okay they just killed that person. That doesn't exactly sound like what you're saying with "a motorist can be doing everything he's supposed to be doing, but if he injures a cyclist, it's automatically his fault".

Accident reports are hardly filled with cyclists crashing into peoples' cars in hopes to get money. Many motorist/cycling accidents aren't even reported. I guess I can see where you may think the motorist is often found responsible for an accident with a cyclist, but that's hardly what stats show. I already mentioned the video that clearly showed a motorist responsible for dooring a woman in San Francisco and how GEICO still put the blame on the cyclist. San Diego has numbers that show cyclists are responsible for over half of the 2,500 accident reports from 2011 to 2014. The same has been found in Pittsburgh, though interestingly, in the UK, it's most often the motorist that is at fault. In Minneapolis, both motorist and cyclist shared almost equal responsibility for accidents.

Again, as I mentioned in the other post, the best way to approach cycling in the US is to treat cycling (and the lives of cyclists) seriously. I don't believe any city has even done the basic intersection design that the Dutch have, which is the below. Some cities are starting to take cycling seriously and creating truly dedicated lanes, but that number is few. There is evidence to support the more cyclists are treated like a part of the road, the safer cycling becomes and the less likely they are to disobey the law. That's what should be done, not removing and banning a completely valid form of commuting.

As for the incident at hand, it's obviously hard to place blame without knowing anything else about what happened, but it does sound like a basic case of a cyclist being doored.

    pickone4me's avatar - 021414tvlies zpsa453b327.jpg
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    Posted: June 26, 2015, 4:23 pm - IP Logged

    My definition of reason is the same one that's in Webster's or Oxfords. I point out that some cyclists don't represent all cyclists, and people choose to continue to believe that all cyclists are evil and reckless.

    Yes, sometimes cyclists are responsible for motor-vehicle related accidents, and other times the person in the vehicle is responsible. You seem to be ignoring that just because there are cyclists that are reckless, that a very large population of cyclists obey the law, and you would prefer to outright ban biking. That even though there are many more motor-vehicle with motor-vehicle accidents or incidents where a motorist is clearly disobeying the law, you don't believe vehicles should be banned. You somehow realize that with motor-vehicles, there are some bad eggs and they shouldn't all be banned because of those bad eggs, like you believe with cycling.

    You believe stricter laws should be put on cyclists, but places like the Netherlands show that you only need take lives more seriously, creating more dedicated bike lanes and stricter laws on the motorists to greatly reduce cycling deaths (theirs is 12 deaths per 1 billion kilometers cycled versus 60-100 deaths per 1 billion kilometers in the US, even without mandatory bike helmet laws). In the US, even when a motorist is clearly at fault for a cyclists death, the cyclist is often treated as nothing more than an animal, so I'm not sure how you believe current US laws are attacking motorists in favor of cyclists. If making sure motorists are held accountable for the things they cause is "attacking" them, then I guess I'm fully on board with that, as not only should lives matter of people killed by motorists, but also because doing so has shown that it can create a much safer road for everyone.

    Of course, I will agree that more education needs to be done, but for both motorists and cyclists (which is what the Netherlands does). And I keep mentioning Netherlands because they are pretty much the best reference for how to create a safe roadway for both motorists and cyclists, having one of the safest traffic systems in all of Europe.

    It is not US Laws that are attacking motorists, it is the  bicycle advocates in certain states that create bad legislation.  I have read that vision zero some of the bicycle advocates are peddling around, it has a "vision" of zero traffic fatalities.  Vision zero has no plans to educate non-drivers in their 2 year action plan. 

    As for the netherlands, the setup they have can stay there.  The bicycle coalition wants motorists to be subservient to bicyclists,  what was that equal rights thing about the road way?

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      Teddi's avatar - Lottery-008.jpg

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      Posted: June 26, 2015, 5:30 pm - IP Logged

      I have no problem with disagreements, just the claiming of one group being 100% correct and the other being 100% in the wrong.

      As I said in my last comment (which was posted after you posted yours), there are many, many instances where a motorist causes the death of a cyclist and the driver isn't held accountable for that person's death. They will get a ticket for clearly being in the wrong, but then are basically told that it's okay they just killed that person. That doesn't exactly sound like what you're saying with "a motorist can be doing everything he's supposed to be doing, but if he injures a cyclist, it's automatically his fault".

      Accident reports are hardly filled with cyclists crashing into peoples' cars in hopes to get money. Many motorist/cycling accidents aren't even reported. I guess I can see where you may think the motorist is often found responsible for an accident with a cyclist, but that's hardly what stats show. I already mentioned the video that clearly showed a motorist responsible for dooring a woman in San Francisco and how GEICO still put the blame on the cyclist. San Diego has numbers that show cyclists are responsible for over half of the 2,500 accident reports from 2011 to 2014. The same has been found in Pittsburgh, though interestingly, in the UK, it's most often the motorist that is at fault. In Minneapolis, both motorist and cyclist shared almost equal responsibility for accidents.

      Again, as I mentioned in the other post, the best way to approach cycling in the US is to treat cycling (and the lives of cyclists) seriously. I don't believe any city has even done the basic intersection design that the Dutch have, which is the below. Some cities are starting to take cycling seriously and creating truly dedicated lanes, but that number is few. There is evidence to support the more cyclists are treated like a part of the road, the safer cycling becomes and the less likely they are to disobey the law. That's what should be done, not removing and banning a completely valid form of commuting.

      As for the incident at hand, it's obviously hard to place blame without knowing anything else about what happened, but it does sound like a basic case of a cyclist being doored.

      I didn't see your latest posts, and to be honest I don't know if I'm going to bother reading it because I realized we've really strayed very very far from what the real topic is and what this is really about. I don't think for a minute that this guy would be suing if Perosi hadn't been a publicized lottery winner. The fact that  his ambulance chaser to made that despicable comment about the lottery winner thinking he's above the law says it all. The truck has insurance and I'm willing to bet this cyclist does too.

      I know you think cyclists don't set out to injure themselves but the flipside is motorists don't set out to injure other people either. When one is blatantly negligent they should be held accountable, but it's not as if Perosi is some kind of sadist and purposely opened the truck door just to hit the guy. This boils down to someone with a lot of money being sued because he has a lot of money.

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        Posted: June 26, 2015, 7:01 pm - IP Logged

        He (like every other cyclist) likely just expected the person in the cab to follow the law and not unsafely open the door. Cyclists have to deal with almost the exact scenario every single day, it's just that usually the person in the vehicle is following the law and paying attention to their surroundings. It's like saying you should slow down at every single green light you drive through just in case someone breaks the law and runs a red light. You're essentially victim blaming here, as the cyclist was following the law and was only doored because someone wasn't paying attention as the law requires them to.

        Not sure what your second comment is supposed to be saying. The cab driver followed the law by not parking in the bike lane, told the people to watch out for the bike, they didn't hear and didn't safely open the door, doored the guy, and the guy on the bike didn't feel like calling the cops (he says because the cops are corrupt). What happens after the video isn't relevant to what the first few seconds of the video shows, which is someone opening the door in an unsafe manner, resulting in the dooring of a cyclist lawfully using the bike lane.

        And in the video, I'm unsure exactly who would take the blame, the taxi driver or the girl opening the door. It's possible they would share the blame. The law says a taxi driver shouldn't pick up or drop off fares in the bike lane. The wording doesn't clarify if it simply means they shouldn't be stopped in the bike lane (which is illegal for any vehicle to do, resulting in a $115 fine) or that they shouldn't stop in a manner that puts the open door in the path of a cyclist in the bike lane (which other laws referring to bike lanes say is legal for commercial vehicles, which as NYC taxis pay CMVT, I would assume they would be regarded as a commercial vehicle). At the same time, the law does say that nobody should open their door in an unsafe manner, which is what the girl did. Many states/cities could do some good and clear up certain laws regarding bicycles/bike lanes.

        Of course, even in places where the wording is clear as can be, there have been instances where the cyclist is blamed for being doored (in particular, this instance in San Francisco where GEICO tried to blame the cyclist for being doored, despite the law being extremely clear that the person in the vehicle was completely at fault, and even more so as the driver parked illegally in the bike lane). Basically, it's annoying to see cyclists get treated as second class citizens and be blamed for following the law. I keep mentioning Chicago, they seem to understand biking more than other cities, with the harsher penalty for dooring and taking the initiative to build bike lanes that are much safer than the current ones in most cities where it's just a painted section of road. Instead of it going 'sidewalk/parked car/bike lane/road' it's 'sidewalk/bike lane/parked car/road', along with a buffer between the parked car and the bike lane.

        Until more cities build similar lanes, we're going to constantly have these issues of dooring and blaming one person or the other. At the very least, cities should go the route of "buffered" bike lanes. Santa Monica has these, where I used to ride daily, and it was nice having that extra room as there were certainly people that didn't look and opened their door as I was riding up to/by them.

        As for why Del Pasqua didn't immediately call police, maybe he didn't think the damage done to him was significant and didn't want to involve police (as we see in that video, and many others on YouTube, a lot of dooring accidents don't get police involved). He could easily have not realized the damage due to adrenaline, it's not uncommon to have a serious injury but don't feel the affects or realize how serious the injury is until later. People have gotten shot or had broken ribs and not realized it due to adrenaline. 

        Myself, if I was ever doored and required an ambulance, calling the cops is what I would do almost immediately, but everyone is different. For stuff like people unsafely opening their door into a bike lane, the most I've done is yelled at them to pay attention, usually by simply yelling 'watchout!'.

        "He (like every other cyclist) likely just expected the person in the cab to follow the law and not unsafely open the door."

        Expecting people in cars to do anything their way is why there are so many examples of bicyclists running into open car doors. In the example I saw, had the bicyclists slowed down when he saw the blinking lights on the cab and assumed the possibility the rear door would open, he could have avoided the accident. And had the passenger known the bike lane laws that accident would never happen.

        It's the bicyclists that are putting themselves at risk by expecting drivers to conform to them. Some of the collisions had to result in serious injury and knowing a car driver or passenger was fined won't fix.

        "As for why Del Pasqua didn't immediately call police"

        I was comparing the OP the video where the bicyclists didn't want the police called. With all those injuries Del Pasqua require an ambulance.

        "calling the cops is what I would do almost immediately"

        Most people would unless they weren't injured but later found out the driver just won a huge lottery jackpot.

          ttech10's avatar - blobdude
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          Posted: June 26, 2015, 11:16 pm - IP Logged

          It is not US Laws that are attacking motorists, it is the  bicycle advocates in certain states that create bad legislation.  I have read that vision zero some of the bicycle advocates are peddling around, it has a "vision" of zero traffic fatalities.  Vision zero has no plans to educate non-drivers in their 2 year action plan. 

          As for the netherlands, the setup they have can stay there.  The bicycle coalition wants motorists to be subservient to bicyclists,  what was that equal rights thing about the road way?

          As I pointed out with how often motorists are responsible for the death of a cyclist but aren't held accountable, I can't blame some cyclists for attacking their laws. I can understand why you'd be mad at those people, but I'd be more mad at the government who isn't doing enough to provide adequate bike lanes that make it safer for both sides of the argument. And as much as you may dislike the Dutch way of things, but those laws you see as attacking motorists actually made everything a lot safer for everyone on the road, which is hard to see as a bad thing. Though of course, the US does like to think they are the greatest in every aspect and would hate to admit that cycling can be a very safe form of commuting if you just don't treat it like a joke (which many EU countries laugh - and cringe - at our take on traffic laws regarding cyclists). But hey, America finally legalized same sex marriage 15 years after the Dutch did, maybe we're on track to realize their take on cycling is also good for everyone.

            ttech10's avatar - blobdude
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            Posted: June 26, 2015, 11:24 pm - IP Logged

            "He (like every other cyclist) likely just expected the person in the cab to follow the law and not unsafely open the door."

            Expecting people in cars to do anything their way is why there are so many examples of bicyclists running into open car doors. In the example I saw, had the bicyclists slowed down when he saw the blinking lights on the cab and assumed the possibility the rear door would open, he could have avoided the accident. And had the passenger known the bike lane laws that accident would never happen.

            It's the bicyclists that are putting themselves at risk by expecting drivers to conform to them. Some of the collisions had to result in serious injury and knowing a car driver or passenger was fined won't fix.

            "As for why Del Pasqua didn't immediately call police"

            I was comparing the OP the video where the bicyclists didn't want the police called. With all those injuries Del Pasqua require an ambulance.

            "calling the cops is what I would do almost immediately"

            Most people would unless they weren't injured but later found out the driver just won a huge lottery jackpot.

            The reason there are so many examples of cyclists being doored is because the drivers/passengers are ignorant of the law. Again, what you're doing here is blaming the victim. Cyclists arent "expecting drivers to conform to them", they're expecting them to follow what the law says.

            And at the end, are you saying the cyclist faked a ton of surgery? A lot of people don't call the cops immediately, even when they are injured or their bike is damaged. You could also say that most people who weren't responsible for this kind of accident wouldn't hang up and dodge police calls inquiring about the incident.

            I don't know why you're trying to argue that dooring is the fault of a cyclist, even though I've shown numerous times, for numerous states, that dooring is the fault of the person opening the door in an unsafe manner. That's the law, that's what is written in the court of law. It's like trying to say that robbing a bank is sometimes okay.

              ttech10's avatar - blobdude
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              Posted: June 26, 2015, 11:40 pm - IP Logged

              I didn't see your latest posts, and to be honest I don't know if I'm going to bother reading it because I realized we've really strayed very very far from what the real topic is and what this is really about. I don't think for a minute that this guy would be suing if Perosi hadn't been a publicized lottery winner. The fact that  his ambulance chaser to made that despicable comment about the lottery winner thinking he's above the law says it all. The truck has insurance and I'm willing to bet this cyclist does too.

              I know you think cyclists don't set out to injure themselves but the flipside is motorists don't set out to injure other people either. When one is blatantly negligent they should be held accountable, but it's not as if Perosi is some kind of sadist and purposely opened the truck door just to hit the guy. This boils down to someone with a lot of money being sued because he has a lot of money.

              I'm not trying to say that Perosi is bad, but the law doesn't care if someone opened the door with intent. The law is that you must always safely open your door, which he did not. It resulted in the injuring of a cyclist. This incident was fully avoidable if he had checked his mirror for traffic before opening it, something the law says he is required to do every single time he opens his door while on a street.

              Whether or not the lawsuit is completely motivated by money, we can't know that (though I will admit the lawyer sounds like a greedy SOB). But we can look at everything else and see that a cyclist was doored, which is illegal, and is the fault of the person opening the door. I don't know how this is even a discussion, since Perosi admitted that the dooring took place, that he opened the door and which caused Perosi to crash into it. People seem to be ignoring the acts of Perosi is what caused this guy to have screws put into his elbow, has lost him work, and possibly the full use of his arms, for the rest of his life. I'm not saying he should get millions, I'm saying that Perosi is responsible, and from there, the courts should decide how much money should be rewarded to the victim for medicals costs, pain and suffering, and loss of work.

                pickone4me's avatar - 021414tvlies zpsa453b327.jpg
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                Posted: June 27, 2015, 11:07 am - IP Logged

                I'm not trying to say that Perosi is bad, but the law doesn't care if someone opened the door with intent. The law is that you must always safely open your door, which he did not. It resulted in the injuring of a cyclist. This incident was fully avoidable if he had checked his mirror for traffic before opening it, something the law says he is required to do every single time he opens his door while on a street.

                Whether or not the lawsuit is completely motivated by money, we can't know that (though I will admit the lawyer sounds like a greedy SOB). But we can look at everything else and see that a cyclist was doored, which is illegal, and is the fault of the person opening the door. I don't know how this is even a discussion, since Perosi admitted that the dooring took place, that he opened the door and which caused Perosi to crash into it. People seem to be ignoring the acts of Perosi is what caused this guy to have screws put into his elbow, has lost him work, and possibly the full use of his arms, for the rest of his life. I'm not saying he should get millions, I'm saying that Perosi is responsible, and from there, the courts should decide how much money should be rewarded to the victim for medicals costs, pain and suffering, and loss of work.

                Taking up a less dangerous hobby would be smart.  I question the speed this cyclist was going.  I also believe this was motivated by money.  The cyclist is not blameless here.

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                  Posted: June 27, 2015, 12:56 pm - IP Logged

                  The reason there are so many examples of cyclists being doored is because the drivers/passengers are ignorant of the law. Again, what you're doing here is blaming the victim. Cyclists arent "expecting drivers to conform to them", they're expecting them to follow what the law says.

                  And at the end, are you saying the cyclist faked a ton of surgery? A lot of people don't call the cops immediately, even when they are injured or their bike is damaged. You could also say that most people who weren't responsible for this kind of accident wouldn't hang up and dodge police calls inquiring about the incident.

                  I don't know why you're trying to argue that dooring is the fault of a cyclist, even though I've shown numerous times, for numerous states, that dooring is the fault of the person opening the door in an unsafe manner. That's the law, that's what is written in the court of law. It's like trying to say that robbing a bank is sometimes okay.

                  "And at the end, are you saying the cyclist faked a ton of surgery?"

                  The suit says "to regain use of both arms" which means he lost use of both arms and allegedly because he rode into an open car door. There is zero evidence a police report was made at the scene of the accident and because the suit says "Perosi also hung up on police when they called for the same information", it obvious the report was made long after. Doesn't common sense dictate calling police before leaving the scene or meeting them at he hospital?

                  "I don't know why you're trying to argue that dooring is the fault of a cyclist"

                  It's called old fashioned common sense, somebody parked their vehicle and they and/or their passenger want to exit. When I drive by parked cars, I know there is a possibility a door will open so I'm not saying accidents are the bicyclist fault, but simply asking why they are unaware of the obvious?

                  "that dooring is the fault of the person opening the door in an unsafe manner."

                  Saying it and proving it was "in an unsafe manner" are two different things. Depends on how the evidence is presented, but it's usually the bicyclist at risk so a judge may rule they were riding their bike in an unsafe manner. At 15 MPH they are traveling at 22 feet per second and if they are depending on the driver or a passenger to see them, it doesn't say much for them caring about their own safety.

                  If the law code includes the subjective "in an unsafe manner", it opens the "reasonable doubt" door which means the defendant's lawyer will ask Del Pasqua "why he didn't call the cops".

                    ttech10's avatar - blobdude
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                    Posted: June 27, 2015, 1:08 pm - IP Logged

                    Taking up a less dangerous hobby would be smart.  I question the speed this cyclist was going.  I also believe this was motivated by money.  The cyclist is not blameless here.

                    Just so I am understanding this correctly, you're now on the theory that this cyclist was following this guy around and speeding past his vehicle in the hopes that the person would then break the law and open their door into him?

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                      Posted: June 27, 2015, 1:08 pm - IP Logged

                      It is not US Laws that are attacking motorists, it is the  bicycle advocates in certain states that create bad legislation.  I have read that vision zero some of the bicycle advocates are peddling around, it has a "vision" of zero traffic fatalities.  Vision zero has no plans to educate non-drivers in their 2 year action plan. 

                      As for the netherlands, the setup they have can stay there.  The bicycle coalition wants motorists to be subservient to bicyclists,  what was that equal rights thing about the road way?

                      "It is not US Laws that are attacking motorists, it is the  bicycle advocates in certain states that create bad legislation.

                      And if the law says the very subjective "opening a car door in an unsafe manner", it's terrible legislation.

                        ttech10's avatar - blobdude
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                        Posted: June 27, 2015, 2:05 pm - IP Logged

                        "And at the end, are you saying the cyclist faked a ton of surgery?"

                        The suit says "to regain use of both arms" which means he lost use of both arms and allegedly because he rode into an open car door. There is zero evidence a police report was made at the scene of the accident and because the suit says "Perosi also hung up on police when they called for the same information", it obvious the report was made long after. Doesn't common sense dictate calling police before leaving the scene or meeting them at he hospital?

                        "I don't know why you're trying to argue that dooring is the fault of a cyclist"

                        It's called old fashioned common sense, somebody parked their vehicle and they and/or their passenger want to exit. When I drive by parked cars, I know there is a possibility a door will open so I'm not saying accidents are the bicyclist fault, but simply asking why they are unaware of the obvious?

                        "that dooring is the fault of the person opening the door in an unsafe manner."

                        Saying it and proving it was "in an unsafe manner" are two different things. Depends on how the evidence is presented, but it's usually the bicyclist at risk so a judge may rule they were riding their bike in an unsafe manner. At 15 MPH they are traveling at 22 feet per second and if they are depending on the driver or a passenger to see them, it doesn't say much for them caring about their own safety.

                        If the law code includes the subjective "in an unsafe manner", it opens the "reasonable doubt" door which means the defendant's lawyer will ask Del Pasqua "why he didn't call the cops".

                        And wouldn't common sense say that a woman who is raped should immediately call the police and have a rape kit done? Yet that doesn't happen all the time. When the police report was filed shouldn't even matter. Perosi admitted to dooring the cyclist. The cyclist had injuries that required surgery. That's all that really matters.

                        Cyclists are fully aware of the possibility of being doored. The people in the video you posted admit that. I've mentioned the issue myself and how I was happy that Santa Monica has buffered paths. But why does that matter? There is a possibility a driver will be distracted and not notice the light is red or they don't realize they have a stop sign, causing them to plow into you as you drive through a green light or other intersection. But do you stop or slow down at every single intersection you have the right of way on just because of a possibility that exists? Maybe you do, just as some cyclists slow down when driving by vehicles, but most don't and you are not obligated to and if that possibility becomes a reality, the person following the law isn't to blame.

                        By not looking back and ensuring he wasn't going to obstruct any traffic at all, he opened the door in an unsafe manner. The fact that he hit someone by opening his door, means that it was in an unsafe manner. I don't know which street exactly this happened on, but I believe it's likely it happened on a 25mph street, which means if the cyclist was going 15mph, he was going well under the posted speed limit. I wouldn't exactly call that unsafe.

                        And back to the why didn't he call the cops argument? It's pointless. The easiest answer to that is the one I already stated, adrenaline often masks serious injury. The cyclist didn't think he was that badly injured and the extent of the injury wasn't found out about until later, at which point the cyclist decided to take action against the defendant for medical bills and other costs. Obviously I'm not an attorney so that's not exactly what would be said, but that's the gist of it. Look at the Gothamist post about this story and you'll see stories of other cyclists who got doored, one mentions believing they were fine, but after so long they realized their hand was broken, and as they neither exchanged info with the driver nor filed a report, the cyclist was left paying for surgery himself. It's not super rare to not involve police in these types of incidents.

                        Given what we know about this incident, which really isn't a whole lot but likely enough to take a guess at what happened, I would be very surprised if this doesn't end in an out-of-court settlement. I think it mostly comes down to how much they are going after him for, but as the cyclist had to have screws inserted into his arms and doesn't have full use of them, he's sympathetic, and Perosi already admitted to opening the door on him. And Perosi hanging up on police as they were trying to get the details of the accident also won't go well for him in court.

                        And for all we know, the wife called Perosi only to see about having his insurance over the bills, and have only resorted to the lawsuit because he refuses to accept his role in the incident (which I highly doubt insurance would cover this anyways, since it's not basic medical bills, but also the fact that the cyclist may be affected by this for the rest of his life). The story doesn't make it clear if they contacted Perosi before the lottery claiming, only saying "days after the crash". It was eight days after the crash that the winnings were claimed, then five days after that (so 13 days after the crash) that the lawsuit was filed.

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                          Posted: June 28, 2015, 2:02 am - IP Logged

                          I didn't see your latest posts, and to be honest I don't know if I'm going to bother reading it because I realized we've really strayed very very far from what the real topic is and what this is really about. I don't think for a minute that this guy would be suing if Perosi hadn't been a publicized lottery winner. The fact that  his ambulance chaser to made that despicable comment about the lottery winner thinking he's above the law says it all. The truck has insurance and I'm willing to bet this cyclist does too.

                          I know you think cyclists don't set out to injure themselves but the flipside is motorists don't set out to injure other people either. When one is blatantly negligent they should be held accountable, but it's not as if Perosi is some kind of sadist and purposely opened the truck door just to hit the guy. This boils down to someone with a lot of money being sued because he has a lot of money.

                          "I don't think for a minute that this guy would be suing if Perosi hadn't been a publicized lottery winner. "

                          Right. Why would somebody sue a motorist who injures them if all the motorist has is auto insurance?

                          "The truck has insurance and I'm willing to bet this cyclist does too."

                          I don't know about the alternate universe you live in, but the cyclist's health insurance will only pay his medical bills (less deductibles, co-pays, or whatever). There's a chance he might have his own auto policy, in which case the no fault coverage will pay some of his lost income. None of that will pay him a dime for pain and suffering, whether he has a quick recovery or has limitations and pain that last the rest of his life.

                          "it's not as if Perosi is some kind of sadist and purposely opened the truck door just to hit the guy."

                          I've got great news for you. If a motorist ever injures you, you won't be required to sue them even if they did do it on purpose. OTOH, if they're still responsible for any damage they do, even if it is just an accident.

                            ttech10's avatar - blobdude
                            Texas
                            United States
                            Member #92330
                            June 5, 2010
                            887 Posts
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                            Posted: June 28, 2015, 8:06 am - IP Logged

                            "I don't think for a minute that this guy would be suing if Perosi hadn't been a publicized lottery winner. "

                            Right. Why would somebody sue a motorist who injures them if all the motorist has is auto insurance?

                            "The truck has insurance and I'm willing to bet this cyclist does too."

                            I don't know about the alternate universe you live in, but the cyclist's health insurance will only pay his medical bills (less deductibles, co-pays, or whatever). There's a chance he might have his own auto policy, in which case the no fault coverage will pay some of his lost income. None of that will pay him a dime for pain and suffering, whether he has a quick recovery or has limitations and pain that last the rest of his life.

                            "it's not as if Perosi is some kind of sadist and purposely opened the truck door just to hit the guy."

                            I've got great news for you. If a motorist ever injures you, you won't be required to sue them even if they did do it on purpose. OTOH, if they're still responsible for any damage they do, even if it is just an accident.

                            There are many, many instances of cyclists suing non-lottery winners for being doored. A lawsuit against those responsible for dooring someone is fairly normal. In Philadelphia a couple of years ago, the jury awarded a cyclist $2.4 million. Two years ago in Chicago, $700,000. Last year in Florida, $3.5 million. Then there are various others where the amount is $100,000-$200,000. All were your basic dooring incidents.

                            In a more perfect world, yes, the insurance of the vehicle owner would pay for these damages, but it rarely does. I've mentioned the GEICO incident a few times where video evidence showed it was 100% the fault of the driver, yet they refused to pay out medical cost for the cyclist.

                            The big issue with insurance companies is when you get into unquantifiable's... the things that you can't really put a number on. Things like the damage to the bike and the immediate medical costs the cyclist had to pay for surgery are something that insurance might pay for. But he also lost work time, and possibly the full use of his arms for the rest of his life, as well as any pain and suffering he will go through for the rest of his life. Those things, insurance doesn't care about and those things are often what people are sued for in accidents.

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                              Kentucky
                              United States
                              Member #32652
                              February 14, 2006
                              7297 Posts
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                              Posted: June 28, 2015, 11:55 pm - IP Logged

                              He (like every other cyclist) likely just expected the person in the cab to follow the law and not unsafely open the door. Cyclists have to deal with almost the exact scenario every single day, it's just that usually the person in the vehicle is following the law and paying attention to their surroundings. It's like saying you should slow down at every single green light you drive through just in case someone breaks the law and runs a red light. You're essentially victim blaming here, as the cyclist was following the law and was only doored because someone wasn't paying attention as the law requires them to.

                              Not sure what your second comment is supposed to be saying. The cab driver followed the law by not parking in the bike lane, told the people to watch out for the bike, they didn't hear and didn't safely open the door, doored the guy, and the guy on the bike didn't feel like calling the cops (he says because the cops are corrupt). What happens after the video isn't relevant to what the first few seconds of the video shows, which is someone opening the door in an unsafe manner, resulting in the dooring of a cyclist lawfully using the bike lane.

                              And in the video, I'm unsure exactly who would take the blame, the taxi driver or the girl opening the door. It's possible they would share the blame. The law says a taxi driver shouldn't pick up or drop off fares in the bike lane. The wording doesn't clarify if it simply means they shouldn't be stopped in the bike lane (which is illegal for any vehicle to do, resulting in a $115 fine) or that they shouldn't stop in a manner that puts the open door in the path of a cyclist in the bike lane (which other laws referring to bike lanes say is legal for commercial vehicles, which as NYC taxis pay CMVT, I would assume they would be regarded as a commercial vehicle). At the same time, the law does say that nobody should open their door in an unsafe manner, which is what the girl did. Many states/cities could do some good and clear up certain laws regarding bicycles/bike lanes.

                              Of course, even in places where the wording is clear as can be, there have been instances where the cyclist is blamed for being doored (in particular, this instance in San Francisco where GEICO tried to blame the cyclist for being doored, despite the law being extremely clear that the person in the vehicle was completely at fault, and even more so as the driver parked illegally in the bike lane). Basically, it's annoying to see cyclists get treated as second class citizens and be blamed for following the law. I keep mentioning Chicago, they seem to understand biking more than other cities, with the harsher penalty for dooring and taking the initiative to build bike lanes that are much safer than the current ones in most cities where it's just a painted section of road. Instead of it going 'sidewalk/parked car/bike lane/road' it's 'sidewalk/bike lane/parked car/road', along with a buffer between the parked car and the bike lane.

                              Until more cities build similar lanes, we're going to constantly have these issues of dooring and blaming one person or the other. At the very least, cities should go the route of "buffered" bike lanes. Santa Monica has these, where I used to ride daily, and it was nice having that extra room as there were certainly people that didn't look and opened their door as I was riding up to/by them.

                              As for why Del Pasqua didn't immediately call police, maybe he didn't think the damage done to him was significant and didn't want to involve police (as we see in that video, and many others on YouTube, a lot of dooring accidents don't get police involved). He could easily have not realized the damage due to adrenaline, it's not uncommon to have a serious injury but don't feel the affects or realize how serious the injury is until later. People have gotten shot or had broken ribs and not realized it due to adrenaline. 

                              Myself, if I was ever doored and required an ambulance, calling the cops is what I would do almost immediately, but everyone is different. For stuff like people unsafely opening their door into a bike lane, the most I've done is yelled at them to pay attention, usually by simply yelling 'watchout!'.

                              "He (like every other cyclist) likely just expected the person in the cab to follow the law and not unsafely open the door."

                              I don't expect the other drivers to follow the law driving in my SUV, but there is no comparison to which is much safer in a minor crash. And I still can't see how a bicyclist can prove somebody in the car opened their door unsafely.

                              "Cyclists have to deal with almost the exact scenario every single day, it's just that usually the person in the vehicle is following the law and paying attention to their surroundings."

                              If a bicyclist is that much danger every day, why do it? Just saying.

                              You keep saying "obeying the law", but unsafely opening a car door is actually deliberately dooring a bicyclist. Saying they looked, but didn't see the bike when a bicyclist can't prove they didn't hardly makes the person in the car at fault.

                              "Basically, it's annoying to see cyclists get treated as second class citizens and be blamed for following the law."

                              To me it looks like the bicyclist expect more than the four wheel vehicles that pay licenses, registration fees, and tax on gas. What I can't understand from this topic and video I watched is why neither bicyclist called the police and went directly to the hospital.