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Jun 23, 2022 in News Blogs

Blogs: BC Court of Appeal Decision Shows Cyclists can be Partially Responsible for Accidents

cycling injury, contributory liability, personal injury lawyer

Canadian motorists are partially responsible for the safety of cyclists, pedestrians, and other vulnerable road users who aren’t afforded the protections offered by traditional motor vehicles. That means driving with increased care and caution in areas where vulnerable road users are prevalent, such as in the downtown cores of the nation’s biggest cities.

But just because motorists carry a certain burden of responsibility doesn’t mean that pedestrians and cyclists can behave lawlessly; all road users must work in cooperation to avoid serious traffic accidents. A recent British Columbia Court of Appeal decision in Orr v Graemond Holding Ltd. made this fact abundantly clear.

The plaintiff in the case, Orr, was riding his bicycle against traffic on a sidewalk in Nanaimo, B.C. when he was struck by the defendant, Christofferson, who was exiting a car dealership. The specifics of the cycling accident were disputed at trial: the defendant claimed to have stopped briefly before entering the roadway, according to Canadian Lawyer, a claim which the plaintiff’s personal injury lawyers disputed.

The trial judge found that Christofferson was fully responsible for the collision and awarded Orr damages for loss of past and future earning capacity. Christofferson believed that Orr should be at least partially responsible for the collision and appealed the trial judge’s decision.

The B.C. Court of Appeal agreed with Christofferson that the trial judge erred in concluding that the cyclist bared no responsibility for the collision. While it agreed with the trial judge and Orr’s personal injury lawyers that Christofferson was negligent, it determined that the judge should have ‘considered whether the plaintiff failed to take reasonable care of his own safety,’ per Canadian Lawyer.

The Court of Appeal found that Orr should not have been cycling against traffic on the sidewalk, that he did not slow down or stop to ensure that Christofferson saw him, and that he did not receive any signal of recognition from Christofferson. It also found that Christofferson was not obligated to yield to Orr while Orr was cycling illegally.

In other words, Orr was determined to be contributorily negligent. The Court of Appeal determined that he was 25 per cent responsible for the collision, with Christofferson assuming the remaining 75 per cent of the responsibility.

If you’ve been injured in a traffic accident, contact Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer. Our team will listen to your story and assess the viability of your claim, a process that includes considering contributable negligence on the part of prospective clients. Reach out today to learn more.

 

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Personal Injury Lawyer at Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers Toronto

Greg Neinstein

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Cycling Accident

 

Accidents can happen. Our team at Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers are experts in bike accident claims. We help cyclists get bicycle accident compensation for a variety of accidents and injuries resulting from dooring, direct contact, and collision with cars, and poor or faulty infrastructure such as potholes. Our team of experienced lawyers will take the time to gather all relevant evidence pertaining to your case. We will detail the facts surrounding your bicycle accident and the lawyers and investigators assigned to your case will gather any eyewitness accounts when we develop a strategy for your case.

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Personal Injury Lawyer at Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers Toronto

Greg Neinstein

Partner, Personal Injury Lawyer

More Posts View Bio

Area of Expertise

Cycling Accident

 

Accidents can happen. Our team at Neinstein Personal Injury Lawyers are experts in bike accident claims. We help cyclists get bicycle accident compensation for a variety of accidents and injuries resulting from dooring, direct contact, and collision with cars, and poor or faulty infrastructure such as potholes. Our team of experienced lawyers will take the time to gather all relevant evidence pertaining to your case. We will detail the facts surrounding your bicycle accident and the lawyers and investigators assigned to your case will gather any eyewitness accounts when we develop a strategy for your case.

More Posts Legal Support

Book A Free Consultation

We will not charge you unless your case is successful.


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