It is not uncommon for Montréal drivers to have to park along a sidewalk, bike lane or bike path.

Whenever a driver or passenger opens a car door, it can be dangerous for passing cyclists.

As cyclists are required to ride on the extreme right of the road, this makes them all the more vulnerable to this manoeuvre.

As a driver, it is important that you make sure to open your car door safely by:

  • Checking your rear view mirror.
  • Using the hand farthest from the door to open it. That way, you will have to rotate your body, making it easier to check your blind spot.

Note that, under the Highway Safety Code (HSC), checking that opening the car door can be done safely is mandatory (liable to a fine of $200 plus applicable fees).

430. No person may open the door of a road vehicle
until the vehicle is stopped and he has ascertained that it can be done in safety.

What to do?

If you are a cyclist and you are the victim of a dooring incident:

  • If no one has called for help and you are able to do so, dial 911.
  • Once on site, the police officer could write a police report if you so desire. You can give this number to the SAAQ for your claim for compensation. Consult the SAAQ website for more information.
  • The police officer might also give the other party a ticket. If this is the case, you will be called upon to testify in Court, as most of the time, the police officer will not have witnessed the incident.