It goes without saying that a bicycle is no match for a car or truck on the roadways. Getting into an accident with a large vehicle while riding a bike puts you at a distinct disadvantage. There are key steps you should take to protect your right to compensation and pave the way for recovery should you tangle with a car or truck while cycling along city streets.
Alert the Police and Await Their Arrival:
In the immediate aftermath of an accident involving a bicyclist and a car or truck, drivers are often quite alarmed at the potential for injury or damage. It’s true that many drivers almost immediately apologize and accept blame for the accident. Some even attempt to negotiate damages and a settlement on the spot. Cyclists should never engage in such efforts immediately following an accident. Calling the police is always the best approach. It’s important to document the facts of the case. A police report can do that. A police officer may also ticket the driver of the vehicle. Requesting a copy of that will also be helpful for any subsequent personal injury claim.
Seek Medical Help Right Away:
Following an accident, a cyclist may want to avoid a hospital visit or medical care right away. Rest assured, that will likely never be the best approach. You are never in any good position to fully understand the scope of your injuries following an accident. Some individuals may be in shock. Others may have endured soft tissue injuries, symptoms of which may not be evident at the outset. Delay your treatment and you may unnecessarily aggravate the injuries you sustained. If it’s found that you did delay treatment following the accident, you may not be eligible for the full scope of damages covering all of the resulting injuries you suffered. It’s your responsibility to limit the damages resulting from your accident as much as possible and seeking medical attention right away is one of the ways you are expected to do that.
Make Sure Your Side of the Story is Captured in Any Accident Report:
There are times when the vehicle driver is the only individual that relates the facts of the accident in police reports. Make sure you are represented in documentation of any facts of the case and that your initial assessment of injuries suffered is recorded also. If you aren’t able to include your side of the story at the scene of the accident, make a request to have the police report amended to include your version of events.
Ensure You Retrieve Contact Details for Driver(s) and Witnesses:
Don’t always assume you will be able to get contact details for the driver or witnesses in your copy of the police report. Whenever possible, make an attempt to get those contact details at the scene. You will need to be able to contact the driver or their insurer at some point. Your attorney may need to contact witnesses to flesh out details of your claim.
Take Notes and Document Everything:
From traffic conditions to weather to traffic lights and anything else that may possibly have had an impact on the accident, you want to record all of the important facts of your case as soon as you are able to. The earlier you can do this the better. Your memory of the accident might only get worse as time goes on.
Make Sure Your Keep Any Evidence:
Insurers, experienced personal injury attorneys and police investigators alike can draw reliable conclusions from the condition of your bicycle in the aftermath of an accident with a truck or car. You bike constitutes important evidence you need to preserve should you want to file a personal injury claim, potentially supporting your version of the facts of the case or even winning your claim.
Get Profession Legal Help:
Finding an experienced personal injury lawyer is probably one of the most important things you can do to navigate recovery of damages in the aftermath of an accident.
If you would like to speak with an injury attorney with a strong track record of success in these kinds of cases, contact the attorneys at Bizzieri Law Offices in Chicago at 773.881.9000. Initial consultation is free and we never charge a fee unless we recover damages for you.