Cycling is a popular form of exercise, leisure, and transportation. However, as a cyclist, you are vulnerable to accidents on the road, especially when sharing it with motor vehicles. If you are hit by a car while cycling, it can be a traumatic experience. Knowing what to do in such a situation is crucial in protecting yourself and getting the right compensation for damages, injuries, and medical bills. In this article, we will discuss what to do if you are a cyclist hit by a car.
Stay Calm and Call for Help
The first thing to do when you are hit by a car is to stay calm, assess the situation, and call for help. If you are injured or unable to move, try to stay still and wait for emergency services to arrive. If you can move, move to a safe area away from traffic and call 911 or the emergency services. Even if you feel fine, it is important to seek medical attention immediately as some injuries may not be apparent initially.
The next step is to gather information about the accident. This includes the driver’s name, contact information, and insurance details, as well as any witnesses’ contact information. Take pictures of the accident scene, the damaged bike and car, and any other relevant information that may help you in your claim.
File a Police Report
It is important to file a police report, even if the driver offers to pay for the damages or claims responsibility for the accident. A police report will document the accident and provide an objective account of what happened. It will also help in filing an insurance claim.
Seek Legal Advice
If you are hit by a car while cycling, you may be entitled to compensation for damages, injuries, and medical bills. It is important to seek legal advice from experienced personal injury lawyers who specialize in cycling accidents. They will help you navigate the legal process, negotiate with insurance companies, and ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Contact Your Insurance Company
If you have insurance, contact your insurance company and report the accident as soon as possible. They will guide you through the process and help you file a claim. If the driver is at fault, their insurance company will be responsible for compensating you for damages, injuries, and medical bills.
Document Your Injuries and Expenses
Keep records of all medical bills, expenses, and receipts related to the accident. This will help you in your insurance claim and ensure you get the right compensation. Also, document your injuries, including any pain, limitations, and the impact on your daily life.
Repair or Replace Your Bike
If your bike is damaged, take it to a reputable bike repair shop and get an estimate for the repairs. If the bike is beyond repair or the cost of repairs is more than the bike’s value, you may need to replace it. Keep all receipts and records of bike repairs and replacement.
Follow Up on Your Claim
If you file an insurance claim, follow up regularly to ensure it is processed in a timely manner. Keep in touch with your lawyer and insurance company and provide them with any additional information they may need.
Take Care of Yourself
Being hit by a car while cycling can be a traumatic experience. Take care of yourself emotionally and physically. Seek counseling if needed, and follow your doctor’s advice for a speedy recovery.
Being hit by a car while cycling is a scary experience, but knowing what to do can help you protect yourself and get the right compensation for damages, injuries, and medical bills. Remember to stay calm and call for help, gather information, file a police report, seek legal advice, contact your insurance company, document your injuries and expenses, repair or replace your bike, follow up on your claim, and take care of yourself.
- What should I do if the driver flees the scene after hitting me while cycling?
If the driver flees the scene, try to get their license plate number and contact the police immediately.
- Can I still file a claim if I was not wearing a helmet during the accident?
Yes, you can still file a claim, but not wearing a helmet may affect the compensation you receive.
- How long do I have to file an insurance claim after being hit by a car while cycling?
The time limit varies by state, but it is advisable to file a claim as soon as possible.
- Can I sue the driver for hitting me while cycling?
Yes, you can sue the driver for damages, injuries, and medical bills if they are at fault for the accident.
- What should I do if I am hit by a car while cycling outside the US?
The process may vary depending on the country or region, but it is advisable to seek legal advice from a local personal injury lawyer.