I am a Canadian citizen whose main mode of travel is the bicycle. The Japanese auto industry has an opportunity to save many of the world’s cyclists from injury and death.

Accidents by car drivers opening the door in the face of cyclists is called “dooring.” I myself was nearly killed by a speeding car on my left when the driver of a parked car on my right opened the door in my face.

To date and to my knowledge, there has been no automobile maker in the world who has placed a permanent notice in their product to warn drivers and passengers not to open the door in the face of passing cyclists. It would do much to save cyclists if every car had a permanent sign reading: “Before opening door look out for cyclists. Open door with your right hand.” Of course, that would read “with your left hand” in countries like Japan and England.

If Japanese automobile manufacturers made this a reality, other carmakers in England, Germany, all European countries, Australia, North and South America will follow. And many cyclists in the world will be saved from death and injury.

This would be a great public relations boon for Japanese carmakers.


The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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