$800,000 settlement for woman hit by car door while biking to work
The Law Offices of Richard L. Pullano secured an $800,000 settlement for a Chicago woman who was involved in a “dooring” incident while riding her bicycle on the city’s north side.
In the spring of 2010, Chicago resident Bridgid Mullen was riding in the southbound bike lane of Southport Avenue when a woman in a parked car opened her door into Ms. Mullen. The collision and subsequent fall caused permanent injury.
According to court documents, the operator of the car admitted that she did not look behind her to see if any bicycles were approaching before she opened the door. A witness at the scene confirmed that Ms. Mullen was in plain sight at the time of the accident.
“Bicyclists and motorists have to share the road. That means sharing a responsibility for the safety of one another,” said Richard Pullano, attorney for Ms. Mullen. “In this case, the driver felt it was too inconvenient to take that one extra step to avoid a potential accident. As a result, this woman’s life has been changed forever.”
According to court documents, Ms. Mullen sustained a painful broken bone and significant, permanent nerve injuries to her left arm. Despite treatment and care from a team of doctors, she continues to experience pain in her elbow, limitations in arm movement, and decreased strength in her hand.
Chicago is widely recognized for being one of the most bike-friendly cities. Although the city is working to make bike lanes more protected from traffic, bicyclists are still at risk.
“Dangerous motorists are still a problem for Chicago bicyclists,” said Mr. Pullano. “Sadly, there are drivers out there who aren’t aware of bicyclists, or simply don’t know they need to share the road with them.”
Richard L. Pullano is a former Cook County assistant State’s Attorney who has worked exclusively in the personal injury field since 1987. Learn more about the Law Offices of Richard L. Pullano at http://pullanolaw.com/pullano2013.