Over the past decade or so, as cycling becomes more popular, the number of bike accident victims who suffer personal injuries has also increased. Unlike occupants in a vehicle, a person on a bike is completely unprotected in a crash, resulting in often severe injuries. Many of the victims suffer injuries so severe, they do not survive. According to data collected by the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, just under 900 cyclists are killed each year in bike accidents after being hit by a vehicle.
Steps to Take After a Bike Accident
Just as in any type of vehicle accident, it is critical to obtain all relevant information when you have been hurt in a bike accident. The more information you can provide that will prove your claim, the more successful you will be in obtaining the full amount of damages you may be entitled to.
The first thing you want to do when you have been hit by a vehicle is to get off the road. You do not want to risk more injury by other vehicle drivers who may not see you. If you are physically able, call the police and wait for someone to arrive at the scene, even if you do not think you have been injured. It is not uncommon for symptoms of injuries to not show up for several hours, sometimes even for several days. The police officer will take down all relevant information and may even cite the driver. This police report can help should you need to file a personal injury claim.
While you are waiting for the police to arrive, you should take the driver’s contact information, including their license number, vehicle insurance information, and registration. Use your phone camera to capture a photo of their license plate.
You should also take photos of any damage done to the vehicle and your bike, as well as photos of the area that which the accident occurred in. If you have been injured and are unable to do these things, ask any witnesses or bystanders to do them for you. And if there were witnesses to the accident, make sure to get their contact information, too.
The at-fault driver may try to talk you out of filing a claim and offer to pay for any damage to your bike or medical bills right at the scene. Do not agree to anything. You do not know what the extent of your injuries are at that point and many drivers who hit cyclists feel badly at the scene, but then later try to put blame on the victim or deny they were even at the site of the accident.
Contact a Skilled Virginia Injury Attorney Today
Some of the most frequent injuries that clients of a Virginia bicycle accident attorney suffer include brain injuries, broken bones, paralysis, and spinal trauma. Our legal team understands that the injuries bike accident victims sustain can leave them with permanent disabilities that not only create physical limitations but also result in significant financial losses.
If you or a loved one were injured in a bicycle or any other type of motor vehicle accident, it is critical not to delay contacting the legal team at Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp because Virginia injury laws have strict rules regarding how long you have to file your personal injury claim. If the statute of limitations expires, you will be unable to collect financial damages for any medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, or any other losses you or your family may be entitled to.