If you ride your bicycle to work or school, or even if you just ride recreationally on the weekends or for exercise, you should be prepared in the event of a crash. Not only is a bicycle crash very dangerous on its own, but collisions with motor vehicles can be especially serious. Crashes can cause you physical pain and injury and also cost you a significant amount of money as you pay for necessary medical treatment and bicycle repair. This article addresses a few of the ways that you can prepare for what to do in the event of a crash with a car or truck. These tips will help ensure that you set yourself up to get any compensation you deserve through the legal system.
- Call the police. You may be tempted not to call the police, especially if you feel like you have not been injured, or if the driver of the vehicle offers to repair your bicycle, but it is important that you report the incident. After calling the police, make sure that you wait for the officer to arrive and make sure to get his or her name so that it will be easier for you to get a copy of the police report and get other updates about your case. Do not discuss “settlement” of your claim with anyone and do not discuss who’s fault the accident was with anyone other than the officer. Make sure that the police write down your side of the story, or take your “statement.”
- Seek medical attention. Seek the medical attention you need. If you are in doubt, err on the side of safety and go to the emergency room or urgent care facility, particularly if you feel like you may have a head injury.
- Get the names of witnesses. The responding police officer should do this as well, but it is always a good idea to write down the name of any witnesses to the crash. If you end up filing a lawsuit for your injuries, it will be helpful for you and your attorney to have the names of witnesses, along with their contact information.
- Store your bicycle in a safe place in its damaged condition. Do not repair your bicycle right away. Instead, store it in a safe place indoors. The condition of your bicycle is evidence that you may be able to use to prove your damages. Your damaged bike not only tells a story about how much money it will cost to repair, but also about the physics and nature of the crash. It is best to keep it in its crashed condition until after any lawsuit you may file is resolved. If you must repair your bicycle because you need transportation, take numerous high-quality photographs of your bicycle before the repair and save all receipts for the cost of the repair.
- Consult with an attorney. Consider calling a bicycle accident lawyer Phoenix, AZ trusts right away. An attorney will be able to help you evaluate your case and can also act as your advocate in communication with insurance companies and defense attorneys alike. A qualified, competent attorney can also advocate on your behalf during settlement negotiations and, if necessary, will be able to file your lawsuit and represent you in court.
Knowing what to do in the event of a crash with a car will help you stay calm in the moment and make better choices. It may also, ultimately, help you get the monetary compensation you deserve through the legal system.
Thank you to our friends and contributors at Kamper Estrada, LLC for their insight into bike accidents and personal injury.