When you’re out enjoying a bike ride, it’s natural to let your mind wander and get caught up in the sheer pleasure of being outside and having your body in motion. As such, getting suddenly struck by a motor vehicle can be deeply shocking, even traumatizing. Because of this, bike accident victims often don’t think clearly. In the immediate aftermath of their accident, they make critical mistakes that imperil their recovery.
To help you avoid these types of errors, our team has put together an easy-to-follow checklist. We recommend that cyclists keep this list handy, following it to ensure you put your physical and financial health first following any accident.
After a Bicycle Accident: Our Checklist
First and foremost, call 911. The driver of the motor vehicle may try to convince you that this isn’t necessary but remember that the cyclist is much more likely to sustain property damage and physical injury than the driver is. Even if you think you’re okay, you’ll want to have emergency responders come out, if only to file an official report.
Beyond that, here’s what we recommend:
- Go to the ER. If you have any serious injuries, go to the emergency room. Your physical wellbeing is always the most important thing!
- Collect what you need from the accident scene. Assuming your injuries are not life-threatening and that you can safely do so, take pictures of your damaged bike as well as any injuries on your body. Also try to gather names and insurance information from the driver(s) involved, and contact info from any witnesses on the scene. Record all of this on your phone.
- File an insurance claim. You’ll want to file a report with your car insurance company. Get a claim number that you can reference at a later date, especially if your bike accident case goes to court. This is simply an important way of showing that you’re handling the situation proactively and responsibly.
- Avoid talking to the driver’s insurance company. You do not have to talk to the driver’s insurance company, even if they hound you to do so. We recommend only speaking to the driver’s insurance provider when you have your attorney on the line to counsel you.
- Don’t fix your bike. This can be difficult, especially if you use your bike for day-to-day transportation. However, it’s important to preserve your bike, along with the clothes you wore on the day of the accident in case you need to present them as legal evidence. Repairing your bike can actually undermine your claim.
- Follow up with your doctor. Even if you don’t believe you sustained any serious injuries, it’s important to be assessed by a physician, showing that you’ve done your due diligence. Also keep in mind that many serious injuries will not present symptoms for days or even weeks, so it’s always wise to get a doctor’s evaluation as early as you can.
Finally, make sure you know the name of a skilled bike accident attorney. If you live in the Houston area, consider McLaurin Law. We’re known for our passionate defense of bike accident victims, and we’d love to help in any way we can. Reach out to us to schedule a consultation.
What should you do following a bike accident? Here’s a checklist for every cyclist to keep handy. #bikeaccident #personalinjury #mclaurinlaw