Being involved in any type of accident can be a stressful and scary experience, particularly so if you happen to be riding a bicycle that collides with a car or truck. Bicycle accidents are extremely serious and often result in severe, life-threatening injuries. Bicyclists are much more likely to suffer physical injuries, regardless of whether they are wearing a helmet and other safety gear or not. It is of the utmost importance that both cyclists and cars understand the traffic laws pertaining to bicyclists and how they relate to cars, trucks, and traffic in general. However, even with this knowledge bike accidents can take place. There are a few things that anyone involved in a bike accident should do immediately following the incident. By taking the proper steps and seeking legal advice, you will have a much better chance of receiving the compensation you deserve for your injuries and any other damages incurred.
Keep in mind that, depending on the extent of your injuries, there might not be a lot you can do right away, other than seek medical attention. That being said, there are several steps that will increase your chances of getting the help and information you need before leaving the scene of the accident. These steps are as follows:
- Remain at the Scene – If you have been involved in a bike accident, the number one rule is to stay at the scene of the incident. This holds true for both the victim and the person who hit them. By leaving the scene of an accident, you can be found guilty of a hit and run, even if you are on a bicycle.
- Call the Police – The next thing you should do after an Oklahoma bike accident is contact the police. It is of the utmost importance that a police report is completed. If the case goes to court, the police report can be a valuable piece of evidence that will help you in a bicycle collision claim.
- Check for Injuries – This should be done at the same time as the above steps. If you do not notice any visible injuries or bruises, it is nonetheless important for you to seek medical attention. Internal injuries can be extremely serious, which is why it is important you seek medical attention right away.
- Collect Information from Witnesses – If there were any witnesses at the incident, be sure and collect their name, phone number, and a report of what they saw. You should also try and get license plate numbers of any vehicles involved, especially if they are fleeing the scene.
- Gather Evidence – Following a bicycle accident, gather as much evidence as you can. Take photographs of the collision scene as well as any broken parts from the car or your bicycle. Get pictures of your injuries, clothes, skid marks, street signs, guardrails, and any other objects that were damaged during the accident.
- Contact Your Insurance Company – Once everything has been cleared at the scene, contact your insurance company and let them know what happened. In most cases, car insurance won’t cover damages in a bike accident, but this does not mean you are without insurance protection. Homeowners, renters, or even personal protection insurance may cover any damages and medical bills incurred.
- Hire an Attorney – An experienced personal injury attorney will know what your legal rights are following a bicycle accident and will be able to advise you accordingly. If the other party is not cooperating, it may be in your best interest to retain a lawyer.
For more information on bicycle accidents in Oklahoma and what your legal rights are, please contact Atkins & Markoff today.