One tenth of a second. That is how quickly a bicycle accident can occur.
Of course, you do all you can to diminish the likelihood of an accident. You wear a certified helmet and other requisite cycling gear. Your bike has reflectors to make you more visible. You only ride in the bike lane and stay alert to the traffic around you.
Yet, in only one tenth of a second, you could realize that all your precautionary procedures are not enough. Your relaxing ride can turn into a painful bicycle accident.
If you are in a bicycle accident, you may qualify for legal compensation for your post-accident bills. That is, if you prove that you were adhering to all traffic laws and that a driver’s negligence caused your injury.
Follow these suggestions for building a strong case for your bicycle accident.
Contact or Wait for the Police
No matter what you do, do not leave the scene of the accident. Wait until the police to arrive and file an official police report. Follow the guidance of law enforcement personnel.
Even if you don’t suspect any physical harm, leaving the scene casts doubt on the validity of future claims. Stay until you can identify the driver and the police obtain all the information they need.
Get Contact Information from the Witness and Driver
The more eyewitnesses to your accident, the stronger your case will be. Eyewitnesses add credibility to your claim.
If you are able, get the contact information of any witnesses as well as any passersby that administer first aid. If your accident is not a hit-and-run and the driver of the vehicle remains at the accident scene, get contact information from him or her. Do not attempt to negotiate with the driver without the presence of police and an attorney. Simply write down his or her details.
Record Accident Details
Write down when and where the accident occurred, as soon as possible. If you know the driver’s situation, include that information. Note the make, model, cover, and license plate number of the negligent vehicle.
See a medical professional, no matter the extent of your injuries. Add the medical records to your other details. Record any damage to your bicycle as well. Take pictures and don’t fix the bicycle unless you’ve resolved the situation.
Remember, the more details you can provide and the more documentation you can produce, the stronger your case will be.
Prove that Your Bicycle Was in Working Order
Your bicycle’s working condition will be scrutinized in the courtroom. Diligent documentation beforehand will protect you in the case of an accident.
Keep a detailed list of any maintenance you perform on your bicycle. Keep all receipts for any parts or accessories you buy. With this type of information, you can show that you and your bike or not at fault.
Keep Your Bills
A legal ruling or out-of-court settlement often involves compensation for necessary treatment. Be sure to keep a record of any accident-related expenses you incur. . Get the treatment you need to recover, but also consult with your attorney on the best ways to strengthen your potential for reimbursement.
If you were not at fault, the driver of the vehicle that inflicted damage upon your bicycle may have to cover repair costs as well. Repair your bike when your attorney feels it’s appropriate, and keep the receipts.
air your bike when your attorney feels it’s appropriate, and keep the receipts.
Accidents happen every day, but you shouldn’t have to pay for the damage. If you have been in a bicycle accident, get more information from your local personal injury attorney. With the proper legal representation, you can receive compensation and get back on the road.