While cycling is an excellent means of transportation, it does come with many risks. Unfortunately, many cyclists are seriously injured in vehicle accidents that result in long-term and short-term consequences. If you’re an adamant cyclist and are always on the road, make sure to read the following blog to help you understand the steps you should take if you’re ever involved in a bicycle accident.
Wait For Law Enforcement
You should wait for the police to arrive at the scene of the accident, no matter how big or small the accident may seem to be. Unlike driving a car where you are surrounded by several measures of safety and metal box that can limit your injuries, you cannot do the same thing while riding a bicycle. The only measure of protection you have is your helmet, so any impact on your body can cause severe injuries. When the police arrive at the scene, they will be able to write a thorough report of the accident and document the damages done. They will also be able to identify any injuries you have sustained and take you to the nearest emergency room if you’re unable to drive there yourself. By waiting for law enforcement, you make sure that the accident is legally reported and thoroughly documented. This will help strengthen your injury case in the future.
Avoid Negotiating A Deal
Some motorists might apologize and accept to take the blame if, in return, you accept their offer. Don’t negotiate a deal. Neither you nor the motorist can assess the damage done by the accident. The motorist cannot fully evaluate the damage to be able to offer you a deal as you might be suffering from injuries or damages that can’t be seen right away. Even if the motorist offers you a large sum of money, they can quickly go back on their word after fleeing the scene of the accident. To protect your rights and ensure that you receive your rightful compensation, don’t accept any offers made by the driver and wait for the police to arrive.
Gather Important Information
While waiting for the police to arrive, make sure to write down the driver’s name, address, driver’s license, license plate number, phone number, car model and insurance information. This will make it easier to track down the driver in the future if need be. If you’re able to move after the accident, try to ask passersby or other drivers that witnessed the accident for their contact information. Having witnesses corroborate your story will strengthen your case and increase the probability of getting the results you deserve.
Request A Police Report
In some cases where the accident is minor, and there is little to no damage at all, police might not take your report. In other cases, police can sometimes leave out the cyclist’s account of the accident and overlook some damages. No matter how minor the injuries or the damages are, make sure to inform the police officer of all the injuries you have sustained as a result of the accident and request that your account of the accident is written in the report. Write down (or take a picture if permitted) the police report number to be able to access it in the future.
Seek Medical Attention
Seeking medical attention is not only important because it addresses your injuries early on and ensures that you’re treated immediately, but it also protects your rights to obtain your rightful compensation. Your medical provider will document all your injuries and ensure that any damages you have sustained due to the accident are written in your file. By seeking medical attention, you are reporting all the injuries resulting from the accident and how they have affected your well-being.
Document Further Damages
After receiving all the medical documentation reflecting your injuries, you must document any changes you have experienced due to the accident. These changes can include losing work days, paying out-of-pocket expenses, or experiencing psychological trauma. No matter how minor the changes are, make sure to document them, as they can help you receive a fair and complete settlement.
Talk To An Injury Lawyer
We cannot emphasize this step enough. Before talking to the driver or the driver’s insurance company, speak to an injury lawyer. Most insurance companies reach out to victims of an accident to try and obtain a statement. Don’t give them any information before talking to an injury lawyer. The goal of insurance companies is to increase their profit and lower their losses. They don’t have your best interest in mind and can use your statement to minimize your settlement. Contact an experienced injury lawyer immediately after seeking medical attention to help you determine your best course of legal action.
Find The Right Support For You
After experiencing a traumatic car experience, victims deserve to take the time to recover and fully focus on their physical and mental well-being. Having to carry the burden of filing an accident claim on your own is not only exhausting but it is also complicated. At James H. Brown and Associates, we understand firsthand the challenges of being a victim of an accident and work with our clients to unburden them from the complexity and difficulty of filing an injury claim. Our main goal is to ensure that our client focuses on complete recovery while our teams fight for their rights on the legal battlefield. Our team will proudly stand up for your right and take every legal action possible (even going to trial!) to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Don’t Take The Journey Alone
Contact James H. Brown and Associates to book a free, no-obligation evaluation claim with one of our experienced personal injury lawyers. We understand that the journey to recovery can be difficult, which is why our team is ready to provide you with all the support you need every step of the way.