The Do's and Don'ts of Being Involved in a Motorcycle Accident
Fatalities resulting from motorcycle accidents are increasing at a rate of 11% every year. As a small, exposed and fast vehicle the chance of going unnoticed by other drivers makes collisions even more likely. So what do you do when a motorcycle accident occurs?
There are several points you must make to ensure you are legally covered. Read on as we discuss the do's and don'ts of a motorcycle accident.
1. Don't Admit Fault
Admitting fault can be as simple as saying sorry after the accident. However, this can be used as an admission of guilt in court. Don't say anything about the accident to those you have been in a crash with.
You will have to give your account to a police officer. At this, you should be as truthful as possible. However, don't be afraid to tell them you can't remember if you have genuinely forgotten some details.
2. Do Call Emergency Services Immediately
To prove what happened, you need to get a police report. This can only be obtained if officers visit the scene making it imperative you call the emergency services right away.
A police officer will come to the scene and get the statements of everyone involved, including any witnesses. Your report will also have the contact information of anyone who has been in the crash. After an accident when you may be confused and dazed, it is better to have a professional do this for you.
The report can later be obtained from the police. This will be invaluable if you decide to sue or even defend against damages.
3. Don’t Avoid the Insurance Company
When an accident occurs, you can face rising insurance costs even if you are not at fault. However, to avoid this and any subsequent legal proceedings, some people may offer to cover the costs without an insurance firm's involvement. However, as a person who was not at fault, this is a bad idea.
The problem with this is that you may be much more injured than you thought at first. Should this number get into the thousands, it is unlikely they will be able to compensate.
Another reason is that they may not even pay. Without involving the insurance company or the police, you have no way to check their details. They may vanish and you could never hear from them again.
4. Do Get Medical Help Right Away
You must get medical help right away, even if you don't feel like you have been injured. Visible injuries should be photographed immediately and added to the police report. The shock and adrenaline are quite capable of masking the pain of major injuries.
Should you decline help immediately and problems appear later when you try to claim damages, it can be argued that the injury did not happen at the scene. With time elapsed, people can claim it may have happened in the time between the accident and your visit to a doctor. Even if you refuse medical attention at the scene, make sure you go straight to a doctor afterward.
5. Don't Move Anyone Who Has Serious Injuries
Even though getting to safety is a top priority, particularly if you are on a busy road, you need to ensure anyone seriously injured stays in place. Moving them could make their injuries much worse.
If the person is wearing a helmet, don't remove it. This can make spine and neck injuries worse. Should you be well enough to move around, then try to secure the area so the injured party remains safe.
Turn off any motorcycle or car ignitions that are still running. Certain states may request that the car is moved if only minor injuries have occurred.
6. Do Get Evidence at the Scene
While the police report may have most of the details of the automotive accident, it may not have them all. When you are able enough, you should collect evidence yourself.
Start by taking some photos of the area. Note where any vehicles are and take pictures of marks on the road that indicate where they came from. If there were witnesses to the event, ask if you can take their contact details to back up claims.
If you have visible injuries, make sure you take a picture of them and follow it up in the days after. They should be backed up with a medical report detailing any injuries sustained during the vehicle accident.
7. Don’t Trust the Insurance Company
The job of the insurance company is to protect its profits. If an opportunity arises to get out of paying or to pay a lower amount, the driver's insurance company will take it. They are experts at this so don't assume you can negotiate with them on your own.
Getting the right type of lawyer is crucial. A motorcycle accident lawyer will protect the rights of the accident victim, claiming the compensation they are entitled to.
8. Do Avoid Social Media
Social media should be avoided at all costs after any automotive accident. If you place comments about the accident online they could be contradictory to official statements which can invalidate claims.
You should also be very wary of posts that don't relate to the accident. For example, if you are claiming time off work for an injured neck, images of your partying and holidays could be used against you.
Finding a Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Navigating the legalities of a motorcycle accident is not easy without an attorney. You may find yourself way out of your depth and you may fail to get the payout owed to you. After the incident, take time to find the best representation you can.
Rockview Accident Lawyers should be your first stop. We provide a free consultation and a no-win, no-fee basis. Contact us today and get the money you deserve after your accident.