When a cyclist is involved in an accident with an automobile, it can have a life-changing impact on their lives. Serious injuries can interfere with the ability to work, care for family, enjoy recreational activities, and simply live a normal life. When an accident occurs, the injured party may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other expenses. Oftentimes, however, insurance companies are unwilling to do what they are contractually obligated to do, which is provide compensation to injured people.
The trauma of being in an accident is enough to deal with. Cyclists do not need the additional stress of dealing with unruly insurance companies. To ensure proper compensations in the event of an accident, there are a series of steps an injured party should take. The following is a short list of steps you should take following an accident:
Report the Accident to Police
Steps To Take following an accident
Many accident victims think they can shake it off following an accident. Others think they cannot get medical treatment because they do not have health insurance or the means to pay. If, following an accident with another cyclist or a motor vehicle, an injured party is experiencing pain, he should be seen by a health care provider immediately. Many serious injuries, especially to the structures of the back and neck, might not be apparent for hours or even days after a collision. If a cyclist has suffered an injury, it is critical it be diagnosed and treated right away. Early detection could mean the difference between permanence and treatable.
Obtain Contact Information
Record the names, addresses, telephone numbers, and insurance information of everyone involved. Also record the make, model, color, and license plate of the at-fault driver's vehicle. It is equally important to record contact information for witnesses as well just in case a driver provided inaccurate information about his identity, insurance coverage, or vehicle ownership. Sometimes, a driver initially apologizes and accepts blame for an accident, but later, after he has considered the ramifications for his actions, will deny negligence altogether.
Some cyclists do not realize they have been injured until several hours after the accident. Seemingly minor injuries may develop into someone more serious and permanent. By then, it will be too late to identify the at-fault driver.
Always wait for the police to respond so the accident scene is investigated and an official report is filed. If an accident report is written, cyclists should make sure it is accurate. The accident report will include the driver's statement as well as all other witnesses statement. If no report is made, cyclists should make sure to get the driver's name and contact information, as well as the names and contact information of any witnesses. If physically unable to gather this information, cyclists should ask a witness to do so.
Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company
You must also notify your insurance company as soon as possible. A delay in reporting could jeopardize coverage. With that said, do not communicate with your insurance company before consulting with an attorney. Most cyclists want to be fair and reasonable with the insurance company but it is important to recognize the adjusters are gathering information to be used against you in the future.
Once your bike is repaired, pictures will be the only visual documentation of the damage sustained in the accident.
Obtain Medical Care Quickly
Consult an Attorney
Contact an experienced Denver personal injury attorney who understands the laws relating to cycling. It is important for you to discuss the accident with an attorney who can help you recover both physically and financially. Injured cyclists should contact the attorneys at Bowman & Chamberlain, LLC, for a free consultation.
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