Riding a motorcycle has its perks and bonuses, but it is not without danger. Making up about 5% of all drivers, according to NHTSA, motorcycle accidents still happens 26 times more often than car accidents. For that reason it is very important for a rider, but also for all other drivers in traffic, to know what to do after a motorcycle accident. Accidents have happened to even the most careful riders and drivers, so knowing the right protocol after a motorcycle accident is an important part of being a traffic participant.
Being prepared is vital because an accident can occur when you least expect it. The NHTSA reports show that more than half, 52% of all accidents happen in a five-mile radius from your home, showing you that not all accidents happen on the interstate and country roads. Sometimes an accident can happen just after you hopped on your motorcycle, so you have to be on guard at all times.
And knowing how to handle a motorcycle accident can help you with many things. Your injuries, your claim, and your driver’s license depending on the way you react after the accident and if you keep reading you can find 7 steps to handle your motorcycle accident like a professional.
1. Get Somewhere Safe
After your motorcycle accident, if you are able to, check your surroundings and see if where you are standing is safe. The middle of the road can put you in more harm’s way and can lead to new injuries so it is very important to move to the side of the road and out of the traffic. After you do that, check if other accident participants are safe and, if not, help them get to safety.
2. Do Not Remove Your Gear
After a motorcycle accident, you may experience a rush of adrenaline. This can cause blood to rush through your body and prevent you from feeling any pain. Pain is very important, it’s our body’s way of warning us not to make any moves in order to prevent more damage. So before you have time to calm down and inspect yourself for injuries, leave your protective gear on, especially the helmet. Leave it on until paramedics arrive and help you remove it safely.
3. Call 911
Once you get off the road with your gear still on, call 911. If anyone has severe injuries, police will notify the paramedics and they will arrive together to inspect the scene and take care of your injuries.
4. Seek Medical Attention
If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident and collided with a car, chances are your injuries are worse than those of the car driver’s. Motorcyclists are more susceptible to broken bones, internal bleeding, and damages than other drivers. Seek a medical professional to check you out for injuries before you take on the next step.
5. Get the Evidence
It is very important to gather all the evidence of the accident as soon as you can. If your injuries allow it, take pictures of the scene, speak to witnesses, and get a copy of the police report. Also, make sure to exchange insurance information with the other driver as well as contact information.
6. Do Not Admit To Anything
Even if you think you are at fault, do not admit it to anyone. Not to the police, not to the other driver, or to your insurance company. It may seem so from your perspective, but it could be the other driver’s fault. And if you admit to anything, it can always be turned against you. Talk to a personal injury attorney before you say anything and ensure you are legally covered.
7. Consult With a Motorcycle Accident Attorney And Your Insurance Company
The sooner you contact a personal injury attorney, the better. A qualified attorney who specializes in motorcycle accident claims can make all the difference to the result of your settlement. Usually, insurance companies offer the lowest settlement amount, but an experienced motorcycle accident attorney can negotiate a much better deal for you and get you the fair settlement you deserve.
Another important thing an attorney can do for you is to help you file your claim in due time. There is a statute of limitation during which you have to file a claim. The duration of the statute of limitation can vary from state to state, and there are some cases where it can be extended, but also shortened. An attorney is aware of these details and can help you follow through with the necessary legal protocols.
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