About 50,000 bicyclists a year in the United States treat for crash injuries at a hospital or clinic every year. More than 700 of them die from bicycle accidents. Considering all of the 50 states, California typically ranks at the top or second in bicycle accident fatalities.
Why do drivers flee?
Thankfully, most drivers in the Bay area stay at the scene. There are any number of reasons why a motorist might flee the scene of an accident with a bicyclist. Some common reasons are that that the driver:
- Was high, drunk or both
- Had no license, a suspended license or a revoked license
- Was uninsured
- Had outstanding warrants
- Was fleeing from another crime
When the driver is located
Should the driver who caused the accident be found, a claim or lawsuit seeking compensation for your damages can be filed right away. His or her insurer is likely to try to attribute some or all of the fault for the accident over onto you. That’s why it’s important for you to contact our offices as soon as possible after a hit-and-run accident. Whatever you do, don’t give that insurer a medical authorization or a written or recorded statement. California law doesn’t require you to do that. Come see us right away instead.
When the driver cannot be found
You must exercise due diligence in trying to locate the hit-and-run driver. If the driver can’t be found or identified, and you have uninsured motorist insurance on your car, you can probably seek compensation for your injuries through your own insurance company. No matter how long you’ve been paying premiums to your car insurance company, don’t think that you’re in good hands. Your insurance company isn’t on your side. It’s now your opponent, and it will do anything that it legally can to save money on your claim. That includes denying it. You’ll be needing us on your side.
Calling the police
Make sure that your accident is reported to the police. No insurance company will give your claim consideration without a police accident report. You’ll want police to come to the scene, and if your injuries warrant it, you’ll want paramedics to transport you to the nearest emergency room. Both sides will rely heavily on the contents of the police accident report.
Insurance companies have created many defenses to uninsured motorist claims. In order to overcome whatever defenses that might be asserted, you’ll want to preserve all evidence in connection with your case, including your wrecked bike. Torn clothing should be saved. Photos of the accident scene and all visible signs of your injuries should be taken. Save each and every medical bill that you receive. If you’re going to submit medical bills to your health insurer, submit copies.
Contact a Hit and Run bicycle accident lawyer today
Contact us as soon as possible about any hit-and-run bicycle accident in or around San Francisco or anywhere in Northern California. You can arrange for a free consultation and case evaluation by email or phone. There’s no obligation, and if you decide to retain us, no legal fees are due unless we obtain a settlement or verdict for you. We’ll want to start our investigation on your case right away. Our goal is to obtain the highest compensation allowed by law for you.
If you or a loved one have been injured on a bicycle anywhere in Northern California, contact us today for a free consultation. Bay Area Bicycle Law is the only Northern California-based law firm to specialize exclusively in representing cyclists. Our attorneys have extensive experience working on bicycle cases and we offer our clients the superior service needed to represent their bicycle accident cases.