Bike Accident Advice: 5 Things You Need to Do if You’re in a Crash
Bike accident advice can be hard to come by. After all, even though crashes are fairly common, the vast majority of people have not been through it themselves.
That can make the experience of going through a crash feel very isolating and confusing. And in the absence of good bike accident advice, it’s easy to make mistakes.
Many of the mistakes that can hurt your case the most, unfortunately, are not at all obvious. Add in that post-crash you may be in shock, dealing with serious injuries, and struggling just to live a normal life, then it becomes difficult to know exactly what you should be doing to ensure you create a case strong enough to get compensation for your injuries and suffering.
That’s why we put together this post. Read it now so that if you are ever in a bike accident in the future, you have some key advice to help you make sure you will have a strong case as you recover. If you have questions — or if you’ve recently been in a crash and need advice — don’t hesitate to contact our team!
5 Bike Accident Advice Tips You Need To Know
Take photos and evidence at the scene of the crash
If you are in a stable enough condition to walk and talk, then do your best to collect as much evidence as possible at the scene of your crash.
This will include, first and foremost, taking photos. Most people have a camera in their smartphone these days, so use that camera to capture key information like the condition of the road, the driver’s license plate, and things like the condition of your bike, the driver’s car, your clothes, your injuries, the weather, etc.
As soon as possible, load your photos to your computer or the cloud so that they are safely stored if and when you need them later.
It’s also important to keep everything involved in the crash — your bike, your helmet, your clothes — in the condition it is in right after the crash. Don’t wash anything or get anything repaired. These things are evidence, and you want them to reflect the crash accurately.
Get medical care for your injuries
If you are injured in a bike accident, get medical help. Your health is the most important thing, and even minor injuries can turn into major issues if they aren’t at least looked at by a medical professional. Best safe than sorry when it comes to your health!
If you are really resistant to getting medical care, consider this: from a legal standpoint, it’s important that you get medical documentation of your injuries and that they heal for the sake of your case. We can’t request an appropriate settlement amount if we don’t even know what injuries you have or how much care will be required to heal them.
You cannot go back and ask the insurance company for more money later, if it turns out that your minor injury turns into a serious condition. It’s important to know what you are dealing with right away — both for the sake of your case, and to ensure you are able to live a normal life as much as possible after your crash.
Write down your version of events
You might feel like your crash is something you’ll never forget. Unfortunately, that is rarely the case. Memories can start to get fuzzy even after a few days, and so recording your version of events as quickly after the crash as possible is really smart.
The more detailed you can be, the better off you’ll be in the future if you have to answer any questions or recount your version of events. Even ridiculously minor details can end up being important. Record anything and everything that you remember.
This doesn’t necessarily have to be like a novel. You can record bullet points in a journal, or you can even record audio of yourself talking. What’s most important is that the facts get recorded as early and as accurately as possible so they can be referenced later.
Keep your crash off social media
The driver’s insurance company will look for any reason — no matter how small it may seem to you — to avoid paying a single cent for your crash. They will look for inconsistencies everywhere they can — the police report, your statements to them, and even your social media accounts.
It might feel like sharing your story on social media will be a good way to recover and connect with friends after a crash, but it’s actually a bad idea. Why? Because any slip-up you make in your online version of the story, no matter how small, can be used against you later.
Even if you have a private account, it’s still not 100% safe; you never know who is a friend of a friend that can actually see your story.
If you want to talk about your experience, try meeting up with friends in person or talking on the phone. If you want even more support, there is no shame in talking to a therapist (even for one or two sessions) to get advice.
Get expert advice from an attorney
The driver will have an army of insurance adjustors and attorneys working on their side to keep them from having to cover the costs of your injuries — even if the driver was at fault. It’s not fair, but it is how things work.
That is why it is so helpful to have an attorney on your side, giving you advice and helping you to build a strong case for yourself. Even if your case doesn’t go to trial, an experienced attorney who can negotiate on your behalf is invaluable.
Attorneys who specialize in bike law know exactly what to look out for and how to advocate effectively for you against the driver’s insurance company. Having a strong attorney on your side could be the difference between getting your medical bills covered or not.
Having an attorney isn’t required; if your injuries are fairly minor (and potentially paying for them yourself won’t ruin you financially), then you can absolutely negotiate for yourself. It will take time and effort, but you can do it.
However, we always recommend at least taking a free consultation with an attorney before negotiating for yourself, so you can go into the experience with knowledge and advice from someone who knows how to win.
Need bike accident advice?
Call us today for a free, no obligation, confidential consultation. You will speak with an attorney who specializes in bicycle law, who can answer your questions and help you with the next steps in your case. Call us today at 415-466-8717.