Accidents happen. Fun, leisurely afternoons can quickly turn ugly and unpleasant in an instant. If you’re struck by an automobile while riding your bike, you have rights. Make sure you are provided for and taken care of in the ensuing insurance and legal proceedings. Here are the top three things do to if you are in a bicycle accident.
1. Take Action at the scene
If you were hit by a car while riding a bicycle, always call 911 and report the accident.
Ask for an ambulance or other emergency medical service if you have been injured.
Write down the driver’s personal AND insurance information.
You will need the driver’s:
• Phone number
• Insurance name
• Phone number
• Policy number
Don’t Discuss Fault
Don’t talk to anyone about the crash. Avoid discussing who could be at fault. Anything you say about what happened or what was happening when the crash occurred will be evaluated by the driver’s insurance company as potential evidence against you.
For example, if you say, “I wasn’t sure how fast the car was going.”
The insurance company hears, “I wasn’t paying attention.”
You are only legally required to give a statement to the police.
If you are injured and you cannot get the names of witnesses, ask someone to do it for you. When the police respond to the accident they should collect the vehicle owner’s information. Make sure that the police have the information before the ambulance driver leaves.
Point out to the officer any witnesses that may have seen the collision. The police should take their statement which will be included in the police report.
Ask For A Copy of the Accident Report
Politely ask the police officer to confirm he/she has accurate details of the collision and let the officer know that you understand what laws the driver has violated.
2. Gathering Evidence to Build Your Case
Take as many photos of the accident evidence as you can. This includes:
• Bloody or ripped clothing
• Street signs
• Personal injuries
Even if the police have already gotten a statement from a witness, it is in your best interest to gather contact information and a small summary of the accident from anyone that may have seen the accident unfold.
Check For Hazardous Road Conditions.
If you believe the cause of the accident may be a hazardous road condition, you must take photographs of faulty road conditions.
This evidence will help decide whether the state was responsible for the roadway’s maintenance, in which case they will be responsible for damages and monetary compensation.
3. Take Detailed Notes
Immediately after the accident, write detailed notes of everything that you can recall pertaining to how the accident happened, or any details that you can remember. DO THIS IMMEDIATELY AND DO NOT SHARE THESE WITH ANYONE BUT YOUR ATTORNEY AND THE POLICE!
Personal injury cases can sometimes take months or years to settle, and your case may be dismissed if you can’t correctly recite any details.
Don’t Dismiss Any Accident
Don’t be tempted to forgive a motorist after hitting you even if the apology seemed sincere.
An apology won’t pay your medical bills.
In 90% of accidents the driver won’t have to pay for the bicyclists medical compensation. Personal injury compensation will come from the vehicle owners insurance, not their personal wealth.
4. Seek Expert Consultation
Even if no one was injured, don’t rule a lawsuit out because the facts and circumstances surrounding bicycle accidents are always different.
If you were involved in a bicycle collision in Modesto, it is in your best interest to seek a free expert opinion from Sodhi Law Group.
The Sodhi Law Group is an experienced auto accident law firm representing clients who have been in bicycle, and motor vehicle accidents in California.
Our free expert opinion will only benefit you and could help you receive the compensation you and your family deserve.
For a free confidential consultation about your case, call (209) 900-8200 or fill out our webform contact us today!