According to a report done in 2015 by National Highway Safety and Administration (NHTSA), 2.24 cyclists were killed on U.S roads every day, bringing the year’s total to 818. Many of these accidents occur due to distracted drivers, lack of bike lanes, and broken streets.
Whether you commute to work or cycle as a hobby, a cycling accident can get to you any time. Some may be fatal while others minor, but either way, you need to understand steps to take if you get into a bicycle accident.
You need to seek compensation after the accident; you’ll only get it if you take the right steps. So, what are those right steps to take after you get into an accident cycling?
1. File a Report
After you get into an accident riding, the first thing to do is to call the police immediately and file an accident report. A report is essential to help you document the incident and get the witnesses involved. Make sure you fact check the information in the report.
You need to ensure there are no errors with the report and, if any, correct them on the spot. Also, you can consider asking the officer in charge of their business card for documentation’s sake.
Don’t assume that your injuries are not fatal and ignore engaging the police because you don’t know what can happen afterward. Also, don’t tamper with the accident scene before the police arrive. Leave everything in the same state, including the wrecked bike.
2. Collect Information
Unless it’s a hit and runs, you need the driver’s information to after the accident. One mistake many people do when they get into an accident is taking the name and address of the insurance company and ignoring that of the driver. You’ll not be suing the insurance company but the negligent driver.
Always take full information of the person who caused the accident, including their name, contact information, and names of witnesses. Take the vehicle information, including the driver’s license, vehicle plate numbers, model, and colors.
Document insurance company’s information as well as the location of an accident. Failure to note down all this information correctly can fail your lawsuit.
3. Collect the Cycling Accident Evidence
The fact that you suffered severe bodily injuries is not enough information to support your claim. You need more evidence to back up your claim, and that’s why you need to get even the slightest piece of information.
Some of the best pieces of evidence to collect are photographs of the accident scene. If you have a phone with a good camera, ensure you take clear shots from all angles. These should include skid marks, wrecked bikes, debris from the injury, and the state of the car after the accident.
4. Avoid Making Statements
One thing you should never do after a cycling accident is to record a statement. One thing the insurance company wants you to do is to make a mistake, and those statements can turn out against you later.
Any recorded statement without legal advice could be misconstrued, leading to claim denial or limitation. Since an accident is documented as a legal matter, you should not post anything about it on social media or enter a negotiation with the driver.
Don’t even apologize for the accident, as this will be interpreted as admitting you’re at fault.
5. Seek Medical Help for the Injuries
So, you walk out of the accident without a single scratch? Don’t celebrate yet. Whether the accident was fatal or minor, it’s important to seek the doctor’s checkup to ascertain that you have no physical injuries.
You must understand some injuries take several hours, days, or even weeks to manifest. Don’t make assumptions as small injuries from the accident as something that appears harmless may turn out to be fatal.
Call an ambulance immediately and get some checkups. You need to be sure that nothing serious came out of the situation.
If the doctor finds out that you have some serious injuries, you should immediately begin treatment. Once you get treated, make sure you take all medical records for the treatment because these are what will protect your legal rights.
6. Seek Legal Help
If you suffer a cycling accident, you need the services bicycle accident lawyer to help you file for the claim and protect your legal rights. The law is huge, and you might not understand the ins and outs. The insurance company may use your ignorance to their advantage and exploit you in the process.
An attorney will evaluate your case, go through the reports, and check your legal rights. They’ll then advise you on difficult decisions to make. A lawyer will do their best to ensure you get the maximum compensation that you deserve.
7. Keep a Dairy of the Accident
Even after you submitted everything to the lawyer and the insurance company, it’s still vital to keep a record of all the reports. You need to have a descriptive record of everything that happened during and after the crash.
Note down the time of the crash, the location, and the parties involved. Don’t forget to record the circumstances that might have caused the accident. Store your conversations with the witnesses and the police that recorded the scene.
Track your medical treatment method, doctor’s appointments, pain levels, etc. Don’t forget about recording how you feel psychologically. Insurance companies have ways of twisting things, and if you don’t take the matter seriously, you might end up in trouble.
Do Your Part and Get the Best Compensation
Even though the attorney will be there to help you get the best compensation after a cycling accident, no one cares about your wellbeing more than you do. You need to do all it takes to ensure you don’t get cheated. Also, never forget to take care of yourself as your health matters more than anything else.
Once everything goes on smoothly, don’t forget a token of appreciation by visiting this site for more general advice on taking care of yourself, your property, and the people surrounding you. Our informative blogs are always ready to help you out on important aspects of life.