How to Handle a Motorcycle Accident
A motorcycle accident can be absolutely devastating as a result of the open design of the vehicle. While a person can definitely suffer injuries while in a car or larger vehicle that is enclosed, a motorcycle poses specific dangers to riders when they crash. The injuries suffered when you get into a motorcycle accident can be very serious, potentially disabling and even deadly in nature.
No matter what the situation, if you have been in a crash while riding around on your motorcycle, there are certain steps you should immediately take. If you have been injured or if your bike has been damaged, you may want to file a claim either with the insurance company of the driver responsible for the accident or against that person. These are crucial steps you must take after a motorcycle accident.
Move to Safety
First and foremost, your safety is the number one concern. If you are not seriously injured, you should immediately move out of the roadway, to a safe spot. Stay there while you wait for emergency responders to arrive at the scene of the accident. Getting out of the road can prevent you from getting hit by another vehicle and suffering further injuries.
Exchange Information with Other Parties
After everyone is at safety and out of the road, approach the other driver or drivers and exchange information with them. You should exchange names, phone numbers, addresses, license plate and driver’s license numbers and insurance information. You may also want to make note of the make and model of the other vehicle or vehicles involved in the accident, including a general description of them.
You should also look around for witnesses and get their names, phone numbers and accounts of the accident. Ask them to either write down what they saw or record their statements with your smartphone. This can serve as invaluable evidence for your personal injury claim once you meet with a motorcycle accident attorney.
Call the Police
Dial 911 as soon as possible to request that the police arrive at the scene of your motorcycle accident. You should also be able to get an ambulance with emergency medical personnel on the scene as well. A police report must be taken if the accident resulted in property damage over $500 or if there were any injuries. Make sure to speak with the officer to get your take of the events surrounding the accident on the report.
Also, get the name and badge number of any police officer who responds to the accident scene. When you speak with a personal injury lawyer about preparing a claim, they may want to contact the officer.
Make sure you get medically checked out by the EMTs who come to the scene. Later, you should get a ride to the nearest hospital to get a fuller medical exam by a doctor. You may not realize you are injured so soon after a motorcycle accident due to all the adrenaline pumping quickly through your body. Many injuries may not show up until hours or days later.
Make Note of Your Surroundings
You will also want to make note of your surroundings after an accident. Write down the details, including the specific location, road conditions, weather conditions, speed limit, lighting conditions and even the direction the vehicles involved were traveling. Also, taking pictures of the scene is very important. Capture shots that include your motorcycle and the damage it sustained, the road and skid marks and anything else that is relevant to the accident.
Be Careful of What You Say
While you are waiting at the scene of the accident and gathering information from the other parties involved, it’s important to be careful of what you say. One of the most important things to acknowledge is that you must keep your conversation to the minimum because something you say can be misconstrued as an admission of fault. While you know you were not at fault for the motorcycle accident, even simply saying “I’m sorry” can land you in hot water. It can work against you if you file a personal injury claim as the other party or their attorney can bring that up as you taking responsibility for the crash.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Finally, you should contact your insurance company and notify an agent that you were in a motorcycle accident. Give all of the information you have gathered, but avoid saying too much and especially admitting to fault for the crash.
If you were in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault and sustained injuries, you need West Coast Trial Lawyers on your side, protecting your best interests. A skilled motorcycle accident lawyer can represent you in your case and ensure that your rights are protected. Contact West Coast Trial Lawyers at your earliest convenience to discuss your case with a personal injury lawyer who can help you get started on your claim.