What To Do After A Bicycle Accident
No matter how safety conscious you are, the odds are stacked against you if you ride a bicycle as your method of transportation. Cars far outnumber your standard bicycle almost everywhere and that can easily spell disaster for you. At some point, you or someone you know will probably be in an accident involving a motorist. Knowing what to do in the immediate aftermath can make a difference not only in how well you protect your rights but also in ensuring that all injured parties get the medical attention they need.
The following checklist can help you maintain control over the situation while making sure you preserve critical information.
- Call 911
You and the motorist involved in the accident are legally obligated to remain at the scene of the accident. Even if you think you haven’t been injured, you still need to wait for the police to arrive. There are many injuries that form hours to even days later, and if you leave the scene, it may be impossible to track down the motorist if you wish to seek compensation. The police will write a report and will call emergency medical services if they are needed.
- Gather Important Information
If you can, collect information and evidence while you are still at the scene of the accident. If there are any eyewitnesses that saw the crash take place, try to get their names and phone numbers. You will need to ask them if they are willing to put a statement on the record. You should also gather the motorist’s information as well. If you were involved in a hit and run and saw the car that hit you, try to write down the make, model, color, and any license plate numbers that you remember while the memory is fresh in your mind.
- Take Photographs of the Scene
Before you leave the scene, if you are able, you should take photos of the area where the crash took place. If there are any signs of the car, such as skid marks, broken glass, or even vehicle paint marks on your bicycle, take pictures. If you are too badly injured to collect evidence on your own, the police will do so for you. You can also ask a trusted friend or family member to go take pictures for you.
- Go to the Hospital
It is critical to get medical attention right away. In many cases, the adrenaline from the crash often masks the pain from injuries. This means you can’t assume that you are okay. You may have a hidden injury, such as traumatic brain injury, neck, or back injury, and you might not even be aware of it till after the adrenaline wears off. Seeking medical attention right away will help ensure that any hidden injuries are taken care of before they get worse.