What to Do After a Bicycle Accident in California
A bicycle accident in Glendale can happen in a split second, but the consequences can last a lifetime. The sudden impact of any bike crash can cause severe injury or even death.
You should take specific steps after being in an accident that could affect your legal rights and ability to recover damages. In California, bicyclists share the same rights and responsibilities as drivers sharing the same road.
While your bicycle accident may seem overwhelming right now, you don’t have to worry. You can reach out to the bicycle accident lawyers at Shirvanian Law to help you proceed with your case.
Stay at the Accident Scene
Following a bicycle accident, you should remove yourself from the road if you do not have severe injuries and it is safe to do so. Check yourself and others for cuts and broken bones.
The other driver may be nervous or angry about being involved in an accident. If they’re not cooperative, inebriated, or are attempting to flee the scene, you need to contact the police immediately so they can handle the conflict and make a report of the crash.
If you have any injuries, do not leave the scene and call 911 immediately. If you cannot place the phone call yourself, have someone else call. Emergency medical services will assess your health and transport you to the hospital if necessary.
File a Police Report
Even if only minor injuries occur, you should still call the police to ensure an accident report is filed. You will need to give your account of the accident to the police, including any injuries you may have suffered.
Make sure you do not admit fault to the police when speaking with them about your accident by apologizing or insinuating who is at fault. You should only state the facts of the incident. Any statements you make to the police can be used against you later on by the driver and their insurance company.
Obtain the Driver’s Information
Copy down the other driver’s information, including their name, phone number, insurance information, address, and license plate number. The vehicle’s license plate number and color, make, and model are important information for your claim. Although this information may appear in the police report, you can speed up the process by giving your copy to your lawyer, who will assist you in filing the claim.
Gather Witness Contact Information
Ask for the contact information of any bystanders who were present during the crash. Witness testimonies reveal what happened before and after an accident, such as if the driver was texting or driving drunk.
You need to ask any other bicyclists who were nearby and witnessed the incident for their names and phone numbers. The lawyer may need to follow up with them later to get their account of the accident.
Document the Accident
Taking photos and videos of the accident scene helps your lawyer understand the circumstances of the accident. After the collision, take pictures of your bicycle and the vehicle before the police move them.
Your lawyer can reconstruct the cause of the accident with photos of the road signs, traffic signals, and road markings. For instance, overgrown shrubbery at an intersection might obscure an approaching bicyclist or a traffic sign. The photo might show that the at-fault car failed to yield at an overgrown intersection.
You should keep your bicycle in its current condition and any other proof of your accident, such as a broken helmet or other riding gear. After a collision, it is critical to save every damaged item since you may need it for proof during an insurance claim.
After the accident, do not ride your bicycle again until you verify that the bike is in good structural condition and that you are fit enough to do so.
See Your Doctor
You may think that you’re okay at the time of the accident and decide not to go to the hospital; however, some injuries are not immediately apparent. For your safety, it’s best to seek medical attention right away so a doctor can evaluate you for injuries.
When you notify your doctor about your injuries, they can become part of your medical records. These records are crucial evidence to prove the bicycling accident caused them.
Keep accurate records of how your injuries affect your daily activities and how they change over time so your lawyer can note any pain and suffering sustained from the accident.
Contact a Bicycle Accident Attorney
When you are involved in a bicycle accident, it is critical to contact a bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible. Having a lawyer who understands California’s bicycling laws and knows how to handle this type of case ensures that you get the compensation you deserve.
Get in Touch with Shirvanian Law Firm After Your Bicycle Accident
If you or a loved one are injured in a bicycling accident in Glendale, contact the attorneys at the Shirvanian Law Firm to learn about your next steps in filing a claim. Call us at (877) 809-4223 or send us a message online to schedule a free case evaluation.
List of References
Safety Tips for Bicyclists and Motorists