On Wednesday 7th August 2019, an inquest was held into the death of Prof. Maria Bitner-Glindzicz, a world-renowned geneticist specialising in syndromes affecting children.
Prof Bitner-Glindzicz was cycling to work in central London when a van driver opened his door into her path, either knocking her off balance or causing her to swerve. She fell into the path of taxi travelling in the same direction and was run over. She died of multiple injuries in hospital the next day. The senior coroner, Mary Hassell, returned a narrative verdict in which she was highly critical of the van driver who, she found, had caused a hazard by his poor parking and had then opened his door without first checking that it was safe to do so. The Coroner concluded that Prof. Bitner-Glindzicz, who was riding her bicycle in a safe and appropriate manner, ‘never stood a chance.’
Neil Sheldon QC was instructed by Dushal Mehta, Fieldfisher, to represent the family of Prof. Maria Bitner-Glindzicz. Charlotte Gilmartin was instructed by John Luckhurst, Michael Demidecki & Co, for the taxi cab driver.
This case attracted media attention as the family highlighted the government campaign to encourage cycling balanced against reduced spending on road safety.
Read more in the press articles below: