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Old 07-29-14, 05:24 PM   #1
dynaryder
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Hopefully good news in DC

Bicycle and Motor Vehicle Collision Recovery Amendment Act of 2014 | Washington Area Bicyclist Association

WABA and one of our council members are trying to push for comparative vs contributory negligence for bicycle related accidents. Hoping this goes through.
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Old 07-29-14, 10:10 PM   #2
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Lets hope it does pass.
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Old 07-30-14, 02:59 AM   #3
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I definitely hope this passes!!
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Old 07-30-14, 05:27 AM   #4
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Even better news is that an appeals court has thrown out DC's prohibition against carrying firearms, so now cyclists have some means of protecting themselves from deadly assault by motorists.
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Old 07-30-14, 08:56 AM   #5
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This kind of piecemeal, limited scope bill is an example of the worst in current American thinking. I have no problem with getting rid of the 1% rule and replacing it with some sort of comparative responsibility rule, as is the case in most states. But why limit the scope to bicycle/car accidents? If the 1% rule is unfair, it's unfair in all tort cases, and should be replaced outright. Or if an outright change is impossible, how changing it for all vehicular cases?

We don't need or want bicycles to become some special case protected with limited laws that apply only to them. Not only because it's poor legal thinking, but also (mainly) because it opens the door to more "protection" at the hands of our helpful maternal government.
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Old 07-30-14, 05:09 PM   #6
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We already have laws that only apply to us. In DC,bikes can leave red lights with the leading walk signals. In other places,they have the Idaho Stop law.

The difference is that when cars are involved in an accident,unless it's something major like a head-on collision,the drivers usually aren't hurt bad. When a car and bike collide,the driver is never hurt,and the cyclist usually is,often badly. Yet even if it was the driver's fault,unless the cyclist can prove they did absolutely nothing wrong,it can hurt their ability to recover damages. Using contributory negligence for bicycles is unfair.
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Old 07-30-14, 05:32 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dynaryder View Post
We already have laws that only apply to us. In DC,bikes can leave red lights with the leading walk signals. In other places,they have the Idaho Stop law.

The difference is that when cars are involved in an accident,unless it's something major like a head-on collision,the drivers usually aren't hurt bad. When a car and bike collide,the driver is never hurt,and the cyclist usually is,often badly. Yet even if it was the driver's fault,unless the cyclist can prove they did absolutely nothing wrong,it can hurt their ability to recover damages. Using contributory negligence for bicycles is unfair.
You missed my point. I agree that the 1% contributory negligence threshold is ridiculous and unfair, but that said, why not change it FOR EVERYBODY? How about pedestrians?, how about others in traffic accidents?, how about other areas of tort laws (as in most states).

Comparing aspects of the vehicle code that are specific to vehicles doesn't make sense. There are good and valid reasons for the vehicle code to look at various classes of vehicles differently, but justice is supposed to be blind, and the same rules should apply to everybody in court.

I'm with you on the issue, but think this is the wrong approach.
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Old 07-31-14, 05:00 AM   #8
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Hope this does pass. I hope this can be used as leverage to eliminate contributory negligence all together.
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Old 07-31-14, 05:21 PM   #9
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You missed my point. I agree that the 1% contributory negligence threshold is ridiculous and unfair, but that said, why not change it FOR EVERYBODY?
I agree that it should apply to everything,not just bikes. But there's been zero push to do that from anyone. So far WABA and the council member are the only ones doing anything at all. Maybe if this passes,it will be the impetus to change it for everyone.
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