What you do immediately after you have been involved in an accident with a car or truck while riding your bike is very crucial. What you do in the immediate aftermath of the accident plays a huge role in determining how much you’ll recover from your injuries and get compensation. You need to find someone to help you with your bicycle crash injuries as well as any lawsuits resulting from the accident.
What to do after a bike accident
So many cyclists don’t know how to handle the situation when it comes to bike accidents. A lot of them barely know what they’re legally entitled to. That’s why it’s very important to seek help from a professional. Consult with an attorney who has a clear understanding of how to handle bike accident cases. The attorney will:
- Advise you on the way forward
- Represent you in a lawsuit
- Negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf
But before you look for an attorney, there are a couple of things you need to do that will help you keep track of all the important details of the accident. No matter how mild you think the accident is you still need to do the following:
1. Get checked out
Seek medical attention as soon as possible after the accident even if the injuries are not very serious. The not-so-serious injuries could later develop to more serious or even permanent problems.
The fact that you have sought medical attention is proof enough that you were injured in the accident. Ask someone to take pictures of your injuries before and after treatment if you’re in no position to do it yourself.
Be overcautious with your body. When a cyclist is involved in a collision, the adrenaline at the scene could mask an internal injury they received. Some people might not realize that they’ve been injured until hours after the accident. You shouldn’t let the fear of medical bills stop you from visiting the ER if you feel that something isn’t right.
2. Preserve evidence
Leave your bike and all the damaged property including the helmet at the scene just in the same state as after the accident. If your clothes are bloody, don’t wash them. Avoid moving or trying to fix things
You should also take a picture of the scene of the accident.
3. Obtain the driver’s and witness’s information
If you can, get the other cyclist’s/driver’s name as well as their address, phone number, plate number, and insurance information. This is very important to protect yourself. Do not try to negotiate with the driver. They could accept the blame and apologize only for them to later deny the negligence on their part or even deny being at the scene of the accident.
You should also get the names and contact information for everyone anyone who witnessed the accident
4. Wait for the police to arrive
It’s very important for the police to come to the scene, gather information, and file a report. This way you’ll be sure that the story will not be changed no matter what, especially if you need to submit an insurance claim. Everything might seem okay while at the scene but the story could change when everybody goes home.
5. Narrate your version of events in the accident report
The police will ask you to make a statement from both of you. Make sure that you give your side of the story and by all means, report all your injuries no matter how minor.
If the police fail to include your statement in the accident report, you can have it amended later.
You should also keep mental notes of the accident. Keep a record of how everything happened and specifically where it happened. Other details that may seem negligible but are also important include the weather conditions, the road, and the traffic.
6. Recover your losses
Your physical injuries are the most important thing that you need to take care of first. But once you’re done, you should follow up on your damaged material. If the other party is at fault, their insurance company will cover the damage caused to your bike.
Find a reputable bike shop to thoroughly inspect your bike and put everything in writing after. If the bike is unsafe to ride it should be declared a total loss. The money you get will be equivalent to your old bike’s market value.
A lot of cyclists do not know what actions to take when they’re involved in an accident. There isn’t much information about exactly what to do. This may be attributed to the fact that most bike accidents are relatively minor and the cyclists don’t know who to reach out to for help. But that shouldn’t stop anyone from taking the proper steps to make sure that they’re protected in the aftermath. We hope that this piece gave you an idea or two about how to act in that situation.