Car vs. Bicycle: What to Do When You’re in a Bicycle Accident in Dallas
Every year, more than 1,000 bicyclists are killed while on the road, and hundreds of thousands more are injured in various accidents.
Bicycle crash injuries can have a seriously negative effect one’s quality of life. They also can be incredibly expensive. In fact, reports show that these injuries result in lifetime medical costs and losses in productivity of over $10 billion.
Have you recently been injured in a bicycle accident? Are you unsure of what to do next? Are you having a hard time getting the money together that you need for treatment?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, read on to learn more about what you should do after being injured in a bicycle accident.
Immediately After the Accident
Immediately after a bicycle accident takes place, your number one priority is to get yourself to a safe place. Get out of the road and away from other cars. Then, call 911.
Once you’re safe, it’s time to start gathering evidence related to the accident. Start by collecting information from the at-fault driver, such as:
- Their full name
- Their contact information
- Their car insurance provider and policy number
- Their driver’s license or permit
You’ll need information about their vehicle, too. This includes the year, make, and model of the car, as well as their Vehicle Identification Number and license plate number.
Listen and Document
Listen closely to what the at-fault driver says after the crash. Have they admitted fault or said that they weren’t paying attention? If so, write this information down as soon as you can.
Be sure to take pictures of the scene, too. Get pictures of your bicycle, your injuries, the surrounding area, and the at-fault driver’s car.
Be as thorough as possible when documenting the accident. It’s better to have too much information than not enough.
Look around for witnesses who can corroborate your story, too. If anyone saw the crash happen, get their name and information and ask them to write a statement about the incident for you.
Check Out the Scene
Look around for hazardous road conditions while you’re waiting for the police or ambulance to arrive.
Is there broken pavement? Potholes? A hard-to-see stop sign that the driver missed?
If poor road conditions contributed to your accident, you may be able to file a personal injury claim with the county or state government, especially if you live in a city that’s considered to be dangerous for cyclists.
Watch What You Say
When you’re at the scene, be very careful about what you say to the at-fault driver. Avoid comments like, “It’s fine” or “I’m okay.” These could be used against you during a settlement negotiation and could make it harder for you to get the compensation you deserve.
Visit a Doctor
See a doctor as soon as you can after the accident occurs.
Even if you don’t think you have any injuries, it’s still important to get checked out. Sometimes, it takes a few days for symptoms to present themselves.
If you assume everything is fine and go about your life without seeing a doctor, it can be harder to prove that your accident is what brought on your symptoms.
Don’t minimize your symptoms when you’re at the doctor’s office or talking to a paramedic. Tell them everything, no matter how mild it seems. Again, it’s better to over-share than to not provide enough information.
Attend your follow-up appointments, too. If you don’t, you could end up undermining your claims.
Document Your Recovery
Be sure to carefully document the recovery process, too. Obtain copies of your x-rays or other scans. Take pictures or make videos documenting your injuries in all stages, too.
Should your case end up in court, this information can help to convince a jury of the severity of your injuries and the effect the accident had on your quality of life.
Keep Your Paperwork Organized
Be sure to hang on to all the paperwork you have regarding the accident.
This includes all the information you have about the at-fault driver, as well as accident reports, medical bills, and copies of your scans. You’re going to need all of this information in order to build a solid case for yourself.
If you’re not sure if you need a particular document, hang on to it just in case. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Keep all of these documents organized in a binder or folder. That way, you’ll be able to find and refer to them whenever you need them.
Hire an Attorney
Most injury cases do not need to go to trial. But, it’s still good to have a personal injury attorney on your side.
One of the main benefits of hiring an attorney is that they can communicate with the at-fault driver’s insurance provider on your behalf. This is a must if you want to get a fair settlement.
It’s best to avoid talking to the at-fault driver’s insurance provider until you are able to hire a personal injury attorney. Insurance companies are notorious for collecting information about the accident and then using it against you to reduce the amount of money they have to pay out.
What Else Does an Attorney Do?
Personal injury attorneys can also walk you through the process of filing a claim and minimize the amount of stress you have to deal with while you’re recovering.
They can even hire a bicycle accident expert to investigate your accident.
This expert will examine the evidence you collected and return to the scene of the accident to check it out. They might measure skid marks or diagram the scene to figure out exactly what caused the accident.
Have You Been Injured in a Bicycle Accident?
Now that you know how to proceed after being injured in a bicycle accident, it’s time to take action. If you haven’t hired a lawyer, now is the time to do so.
If you live in or around the Dallas, Texas area, we’re here to help you at The Benton Law Firm today.
We have recovered millions of dollars for our personal injury clients and will work hard to ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Contact us today to schedule a free evaluation of your case.