Q&A - Cyclist Failed to Yield
Question: I was driving at the intersection of 2nd Avenue and the Cambie Street on ramp in Vancouver. I turned right on a green light to head onto Cambie Street. I did not have to yield to any pedestrians as they were being held by the pedestrian signal. I moved about 20 feet into turn and my car was struck on the passenger side by a bicyle rider doing full speed.
The impact caused about $2,300 damage to my car. I feel that the cyclist is at fault as they did not yield. I had the right of way to turn.
Of course we would of yield to the biker if they were in the bike crossing, BUT we were half way through it when the collision occurred. The cyclist was wearing earphones, a face mask and was not wearing a helmet!
We were moving slowly up the viaduct as we had a vehicle ahead of us.
Answer: Well, it's not really a case of "we got here first." Think of it like an intersection of two roads with you coming up to the intersection facing a yield sign. Another car is coming from your right and if you enter the intersection, that car will hit you before you get across. You would yield, allow the car to go, then you would go.
The same situation applies here and the requirement to yield imposed on you by the sign does not change because of helmets, masks, earphones or because it was a cyclist instead of another motor vehicle.
What those things might change is how the courts, or ICBC guided by the case law decided by those courts, will apportion blame for the collision. I do hope that you have reported the collision to ICBC. If you have not, I strongly suggest that you do as they can deny any claim if you fail to report within a certain time period. Judging by the damages you relate, I would suspect that the cyclist sustained injury as well as damage to their bike.
If you are preparing to contest an ICBC fault decision, think of this as exploring your options first, then seek the advice of a lawyer. They are the experts here and my civil law experience has been gained by watching from the sidelines.