In this passing on the right bicycle case (Ormiston v. I.C.B.C.,2012 BCSC 665), the injury claimant fell from his bicycle while descending a steep hill along Lindholm Road in the District of Metchosin near Victoria, BC. He sustained serious injuries for which he seeks compensation. The Court only decided on the issue of liability and the issue of compensation was left to be dealt with after this decision.
The injury claimant alleged that he was forced into a concrete abutment by a car which veered suddenly into his path just as he was passing it, causing him to be ejected from his bicycle over the abutment and down a ravine onto rocks below. The owner and driver of the car were never identified.
The Judge accepted that the unidentified driver was negligent as he was almost stopped at the centre line when he made a sudden veering motion that took his car over the fog line onto the shoulder. The Judge however also found that the injury claimant should also bear some responsibility for the accident, given the cases which suggest that a cyclist bears responsibility for a collision where: (a) The road is one lane in the direction of travel and he/she passes on the right at or near an intersection; and (b) The cyclist is alerted to actions of a lead vehicle, such as slowing, but chooses to pass regardless.
Given the provisions of the Negligence Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 333 and the facts found by the Judge, the hit and run driver was found to bear the greater liability of 70% and the claimant cyclist 30%.
Posted by Personal Injury Lawyer Mr. Renn A. Holness, B.A., LL.B.
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