What should you do after a motorcycle accident

A motorcycle accident can be a very scary experience. Knowing what to do if this happens to you can help lessen the stress and confusion that can occur.

1. Make sure everyone is okay

The first thing you should do following a motorcycle accident is to make sure you, any passenger, and any one in the surrounding area are okay and safe. In fact, the safety of yourself and others is paramount immediately following an accident. It supersedes any other actions. Make sure that all persons involved are at a safe distance from the collision. However, if there is a possibility of severe injury, do not move the person. Instead, call for an ambulance.

2. Call the authorities

You should dial 911 to ensure the police arrive quickly. In the event of damage possibly exceeding $500, it is important to file a report with the police. A police report is extremely important to have on hand when you attempt to recover money for damaged items, such as your bike and clothes. It is also vitally important when collecting damages for physical injuries because such injuries may not be readily visible. In fact, many injuries can take hours or days to become evident.

The police are trained in documenting all of the important information regarding an accident, so you should make sure to get the names and badge numbers of the responding officers. This information will make it much easier for your motorcycle injury lawyer to follow up with them if needed.

3. Exchange information

While you wait for the police to arrive, you should exchange your information with all parties involved in the accident. The information you need includes the following.

– first and last name
– address
– phone number
– driver’s license number
– insurance information

You should also take pictures of the accident as well as pictures of every vehicle involved. It is also a good idea to take a picture of the license plate of each vehicle. As a backup, you should write down the license plates as well as the makes and models of all of the vehicles involved in the accident.

Finally, it is very important to keep this information as organized as possible as it is very easy to get it mixed up if there are multiple parties involved. Keeping this information organized will make the job of your motorcycle personal injury attorney that much easier.

4. Say little

It is very common for all parties involved in an accident to automatically apologize. In fact, apologizing for causing a problem is such a part of our normal day-to-day behavior, but you might not be legally responsible.

Additionally, it is quite common for the exact cause of an accident to not be readily apparent. Because accidents can be extremely upsetting, it is very likely you will not remember all the details at first. It can actually take several hours or even days for you to remember everything. Because of this, the professionals at West Coast Trial Lawyers recommend that you limit what you say. Additionally, many people are not aware that what they say at the scene of the accident can ultimately end up causing them serious legal problems.

5. Take note

It can be difficult to take notice of the surrounding area immediately following an accident. Your emotions are heightened, and if you have sustained an injury, it can be that much harder to do. However, anything that you can note about the following items can prove helpful in any future claim.

– speed limit
– road conditions
– weather
– location of accident
– lighting

It can also be helpful to record the nearest mile marker, either by writing it down or taking a picture. This information will make it easier for you or your motorcycle accident attorney to return at a later date to gather more information about the scene.

6. Talk to others

Eyewitnesses can be very helpful throughout the claims process. If the situation allows, you should try to interview all those that saw the accident. You can write their statement down or better yet, if you have one, you can use the audio recorder on your phone. Gathering as much information as you can while it is fresh in people’s minds can be very helpful. Of course, you should also obtain their contact information. This will make it much easier to contact them later if you or your motorcycle accident attorney should need to.

7. Evidence

Because motorcycle accidents tend to involve more serious injuries, it is important to collect as much evidence as possible to be able to prove your case. Evidence includes getting the aforementioned items, such as eyewitness reports, pictures, and police contact information.

Additionally, it is very important to keep your bike in the exact condition it was in following the accident. Your bike is a crucial piece of evidence that can be used to reconstruct the accident and ultimately prove your case. Finally, however odd this may sound, you may want to take pictures of your own injuries. Remember, anything you document may end up being a crucial component to winning your case.

8. Inform your insurance company

Filing with your insurance company is just another way to document the crash and can be very helpful on down the line. You should provide your insurance company all of the information you gathered regarding the accident. However, do not admit fault.

9. Address your injuries

In addition to the importance of your well-being, getting the proper medical treatment helps you to prove the extent of your injuries and the resultant damages. Unfortunately, insurance companies will use any gaps in receiving medical treatment as a reason to deny coverage of injuries sustained in an accident. Documented medical treatment helps to avoid this frustrating reality.

10. Consult a professional

Even though motorcycle accidents fall into the overall category of motor vehicle accidents, as any competent lawyer will tell you, they are better treated as its own area of practice. As such, once you have completed all of the aforementioned items, it is time to seek a motorcycle personal injury attorney at an experienced firm, such as West Coast Trial Lawyers. Obtaining a motorcycle injury lawyer is of paramount importance because these lawyers specialize in motorcycle accidents and the complexities that are inevitably involved within each case.

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