The Chicago-area Active Transportation Alliance has started a campaign to prevent bicyclists from being hit by car doors opened by motorists.
Part of the effort is focused on persuading the Illinois Department of Transportation to include dooring incidents in its crash statistics. At present, only crashes involving moving vehicles are recorded by the state.
John Hilkevitch provides some excellent statistics showing the frequency of car vs. bicycle crashes, in this front-page story in the Chicago Tribune.
Amazingly, police in the city of Chicago recorded 76 dooring crashes in 2010 and 62 in 2009. In a city of roughly 2.9 million people, that seems to undercount the number of doored cyclists by a significant margin.
In Wisconsin, motorists could be fined up to $40 if they open a car door into the path of a bicyclist. The Legislature approved the law in 2009.
Larry Corsi, a state safety program manager with the DOT, said dooring incidents in the state are not tracked separately. The standard crash report - the MV4000 - does have a category that lists if the car was parked, legally or illegally.
"We would then need to go into those crashes and see how many involved “dooring," he said.