British Columbia·Citizen Shane

Who should pay when cyclists and pedestrians collide?

Vancouver resident Kathleen Murphy was unable to work for six months and couldn't get any compensation after being knocked unconscious by a cyclist.

CBC's Shane Foxman speaks with Kathleen Murphy, who was knocked down by a cyclist on Union Street

CBC's Shane Foxman looks at a growing segment of our roadway collisions in this latest installment of Citizen Shane 5:31

Strathcona resident Kathleen Murphy was knocked to the ground one day when she went to cross Union Street — a popular Vancouver bike route — and a cyclist swung out from behind a stopped car and struck her.

"The back of his helmet hit me in the head and knocked me unconscious," she told CBC's Shane Foxman. "I fell on my knee and then I faceplanted on the road."

She needed extensive dental work, as most of her front teeth were knocked out, and rehab for her knee. She was unable to work for six months and felt the effects of her concussion for almost a year.

If Murphy had been hit by a car, ICBC or another insurance carrier would have helped her with her expenses and losses. Instead, since cyclists aren't required to carry insurance, collecting any compensation was next to impossible.

"There's nothing for a pedestrian being hit by a cyclist," she said.

She sought out legal advice for suing the cyclist who struck her — and stuck around after — but found out that there wasn't much point in doing so.

Click on the video to watch more from this latest instalment of Citizen Shane.


Do you know of a story or situation that's ridiculous or outrageous, hilarious or heartwarming?

Submit your story ideas by email to citizenshane@cbc.ca.

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