What to do if you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident
Have you been injured in a motorcycle accident? Find out what steps to take afterwards and what the legal process may be.
Being involved in a motorcycle accidents can be traumatic, and can result in physical injuries and emotional distress. But it is important to keep as calm as you can and take the right steps to keep everyone safe, preserve the scene, gather evidence and ensure that the legal process runs smoothly.
Let’s look at what to do if you are involved in a motorcycle accident.
1) Make the scene safe and collect details
Safety should be everyone’s first priority after any accident, whether it involves a motorcycle or not. If they are not already, and it is possible, make sure any vehicles and people are moved to a safe location, away from the flow of traffic. Leave your helmet and safety gear on. If they are still working, turn on your hazard lights. Check everyone for injuries and call emergency services.
2) Stay calm and gather information
Try to remain calm, even if the other driver(s) are agitated. And don’t confront them yourself, however angry you may feel. If the other driver flees the scene, try to recall as many details about their vehicle, including make, color and license plate number. If there are witnesses, ask if they got any details or footage of the accident.
3) Seek medical attention
Seek medical attention as soon as you can after the accident, even if your injuries appear to be minor. Not all injuries are obvious straight away, and fast medical check ups can make sure any injuries are detected and treated to minimise future damage. Also bear in mind that your medical records will be important for any potential legal claims.
4) Call the police
Whether anyone is injured or not, you need to report the accident to the police. An official police report will be important when making any insurance claims or for future possible legal proceedings. Give the police an accurate account of what happened, but don’t admit fault.
5) Collect as much evidence as you can
After the accident, make sure you swap information with all other parties involved – including witnesses. Get their names, contact details, insurance information, and license plate numbers. Take photographs of the accident scene, vehicle damage, and any relevant road signs or signals, and keep safe. This can all be helpful later on, and once the scene has been cleared you will have missed the opportunity.
6) Never admit fault
It is very natural to feel disoriented and shaken after an accident, especially if you are on a motorcycle. But make sure you do not admit fault or make any statement that might be taken as an admission of guilt. Stick to the facts and do not speculate. The less you say, the better!
7) Notify your insurance company
As soon as you can after the accident, let your insurance company know. Give them an accurate, detailed account of what happened. They may request an examination under oath, but don’t provide them with recorded statements without speaking to an attorney.
As part of their investigation, they may contact other drivers and witnesses. If you have medical payments or an uninsured motorist claim, you will need to give them evidence of your loss.
8) Keep your evidence safe
Make sure you keep any evidence related to the accident safe as this can be crucial when filing an insurance claim or pursuing legal action. This includes:
- Evidence gathered from the scene
- Medical bills
- Repair estimates and bills
- Details of any other expenses incurred as a result of the accident
9) Hire an attorney
If you have been seriously injured or aren’t happy with the way your insurance company is responding, consider speaking to a personal injury attorney who specializes in motorcycle accidents. They will explain your rights, handle negotiations and represent you in case of legal action. You can find more info on different types of motorcycle compensation claims.
10) Follow doctors’ orders
If your doctors provide you with a treatment plan, make sure you follow it. Attend and make a record of follow-up appointments, undergo any therapies, and take prescribed medications. Keep a record of your recovery process and document the impact the injuries have on your daily life.
If you wish to pursue a legal claim it will be stronger if you can demonstrate you were commitment to recovery. And the documentation of your recovery process and the impact of your injuries will support any compensation for pain and suffering.