The Frist Department, reversing Supreme Court, over a dissent, determined defendant bicyclist’s motion for summary judgment in this bicycle-pedestrian collision case should have been granted. Thee was a video of the incident. Defendant had the green light when plaintiff stepped off the curb into the bike lane. Defendant’s expert presented evidence defendant was travelling at a reasonable speed and could not have avoided striking the plaintiff without striking an obstruction or entering a traffic lane. Plaintiff’s expert’s opinions that defendant was travelling at an excessive speed and could have stopped before striking plaintiff were not based upon facts in the record:
… [P]laintiff failed to raise an issue of fact. There is no evidence that defendant operated his bicycle at an excessive rate of speed, in a negligent manner, or without due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian, in violation of Vehicle and Traffic Law §§ 1180(a), 1146. Plaintiff attempts to raise an issue of fact through her expert, who opines, without any factual basis in the record, and in a conclusory and speculative manner, that defendant operated his bicycle at an excessive speed when compared to the speed of the three other bicyclists, and that in the three seconds (at most) that defendant had to react from the moment he is seen entering the screen, he could have slowed down, stopped, or maneuvered his bicycle to go around plaintiff to avoid the collision, or to make the impact substantially less severe.
Opinion evidence must be based on facts in the record. An expert cannot speculate, guess, or reach their conclusion by assuming material facts not supported by the evidence … The opinion must be supported either by facts disclosed by the evidence or by facts known to the expert personally. It is essential that the facts upon which the opinion is based be established, or fairly inferable, from the evidence … . Min Zhong v Matranga, 2022 NY Slip Op 05063, First Dept 8-30-22
Practice Point: Expert opinion which is not supported by facts in the record will not raise a question of fact sufficient to preclude summary judgment.