What To Do If You Are In a Bike Accident
The death toll for cyclists on American roads continues to increase. With more people than ever taking up this popular hobby, the number of deaths and serious injuries is only going to go up in the future, making the knowledge of what to do after a motorcycle accident absolutely essential.
If you’re a cyclist, or you know someone who is, make sure you know the five key things to do after a bike accident.
1. Call for help and wait for the help to arrive.
Whether you’re the motorist or the cyclist, you are legally obligated to stay on the scene if there are injuries involved or property damage. Even if you don’t think anyone has been injured, it’s best to call for help immediately. The cyclist may have been seriously injured and not realize the damage until later.
Once everyone has left the scene, it’s tough to establish a timeline, file an accident report, and track down everyone who was involved. If you’re a cyclist, the motorist may try to negotiate with you, but don’t make any deals. You may not be aware of how much damage is involved, and anyone can change his or her story after the fact. Reporting the accident to the authorities and allowing them to complete a report is the best way to protect yourself.
While you wait for the authorities to arrive, you may exchange information including name, address, phone number with the driver and all witnesses to the accident. Take photographs of the driver’s license, license plate number, and the accident scene including all vehicles involved. Takedown any insurance information as well. If the driver is not cooperative, the police will obtain this information when they arrive, and you will be able to obtain a copy of their official report.
2. Write down or record everything you remember.
You’ll want to document the accident as well as you can remember it as soon as possible. If you can, take some photos of the scene, your bike, and any injuries you have. Create the entire narrative of the accident including what led up to it and what happened during the event itself.
If you can, draw maps or diagrams of the accident to help show where everyone involved was when it happened, as well as the streets where it happened, what signs were on those streets, and where the traffic lights were. Don’t forget to note the road and weather conditions.
3. Seek medical attention.
You may not think you’re hurt when you’re on the scene of an accident, but the simple truth is that you need to talk to a doctor as soon as possible to have an evaluation done.
The doctor’s report will help in a couple of ways. First, it will help to make sure you don’t have any hidden injuries that could present themselves at a later time. Second, it will help to document what actually happened as a result of the accident. You’ll want to make sure photos of the injuries themselves are taken, and once you’re sent home, keep a record of your symptoms in the days after the injury.
4. Preserve the evidence.
If your clothing is damaged, you have parts of your bike, or there are other key pieces of evidence, be sure to keep them. If you have damaged clothing, make sure you don’t wash it. All of this may become evidence in a court case at a later date, so preserve all evidence to the best of your ability.
5. Report the accident to your insurance company.
Do NOT talk to the other party’s insurance company.
6. Talk to a South Florida law firm.
You want to work with a personal injury attorney familiar with handling cases involving bike accident injuries. Working with a personal injury attorney can help you get the most compensation for your injuries.
Cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle operators do, and drivers must respect the rights of cyclists. A personal injury attorney can help to ensure your rights are protected in case of a bike accident, so don’t talk to anyone until you hire an attorney who can help.
Bike accidents are incredibly serious situations. If you’re injured or know someone who has been injured in a bike accident, contact the personal injury attorneys at Casas Law today to get the help you deserve.
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