Did you know motorcyclists are over twenty times more likely to get into an accident compared to other motorists? Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 82,528 motorcyclists were injured in a bike accident in 2020.
A bike accident is more dangerous because not only are motorcycles less noticeable than cars, they also leave the driver or passenger exposed, increasing the risk of injury.
This is why it’s important to be prepared and know what to do in the event of an accident. Here are four things you should do immediately after experiencing a bike or motorcycle accident.
Move to a Safe Place
Most accidents involving multiple vehicles occur on the road. If this is the case, the first thing you should do is move away from active traffic, such as the shoulder or a nearby parking lot.
Move the bike out of the way as well if you’re physically able. If you are severely injured, however, stay in your current location until an ambulance arrives. It’s best not to move at all if you are in dire need of medical help.
If you have sustained any wounds, it is important to stabilize them as soon as possible. First, take off your helmet and begin applying pressure directly onto the wound using a clean cloth or bandage. If the wound is deep, use a sterile dressing such as gauze to prevent infection.
Elevate the area if possible in order to reduce blood flow. If the wound is bleeding heavily, you may need to consider applying a tourniquet to stop the blood flow. Be sure to seek medical attention as soon as possible in order to ensure proper treatment of your wounds.
You may want to consider keeping a personal medical kit on your person while you ride, one that includes bandages, gauze, and sterile swabs or pads. If you can, try to see if any motorist who stopped to help has one on-hand.
Keep Your Gear On
When you go into shock after an accident, the body releases adrenaline as a defense response, which temporarily numbs pain. Because of this, you may not even realize you’ve sustained injuries until a few days have passed.
To prevent exacerbating any injuries you may have, keep all your protective gear on until paramedics can see you.
When cycling, no matter if you’re pedaling or using a motorcycle, it’s vitally important to wear safety gear to protect yourself in the event of an accident.
Helmets are a must and should be fitted correctly and meet the required safety standards. Motorcycle jackets, gloves, boots, and other protective apparel can also help reduce the impact of an accident on your body.
Ensure you choose products that are specifically designed for motorcycle riders. This can help save you from a lot of pain in the event of an accident.
In addition, make sure your bike is always well-maintained to ensure optimal performance and safety. Taking these precautions can help reduce the risk of serious injuries in a crash.
Report the Bike Accident
Call 911 to report the accident and request police or medical help, if necessary. If the police make a report, make sure to secure a copy along with contact information for the responding police department. This information is important for insurance purposes.
When calling 911 in the event of an accident, it’s important to provide as much detail as possible. Provide your exact location and a brief description of what happened. Describe any injuries you or the other party may have sustained and the type of vehicle involved.
Finally, make sure to follow all instructions given by the 911 operator and stay on the line until help arrives. By providing as much information as possible, you can ensure emergency personnel are able to respond quickly and effectively.
Gather Your Documents
Take photos of the accident, resulting damage, and license plates of the vehicles involved. You should also get the other driver’s information, such as their full name, license number, and insurance provider.
If there are any witnesses willing to give statements, you should jot down their contact information, as well.
Once you have gathered all the documents related to an accident, it is important to safely store them. All of these documents can be valuable evidence in case of a dispute or legal action.
To protect your documentation, make copies and store them securely in a safe place, such as a special folder that you can find any time. Whenever possible, store the originals in a fire-proof safe or safety deposit box.
Additionally, make sure to regularly back up your documents in case of any potential computer malfunctions. Taking these steps can help you have peace of mind that your important documents will remain secure should you ever need them.
Hire a Lawyer after a Bike Accident
While not exactly required, the expertise of a motorcycle accidents personal injury attorney can help you get the insurance settlement you deserve.
Most people have trouble understanding the complicated laws that apply to bike accidents, and insurance companies take full advantage of this.
On the other hand, a professional lawyer has the experience and knowledge to negotiate on your behalf and secure a more favorable outcome.
A qualified and experienced attorney will understand the complexities of the legal system and be able to advise you on how best to pursue your case.
They can also help you document all relevant evidence, provide expert witness testimony, negotiate with insurance companies and opposing lawyers, and ensure that you receive a fair settlement.
Additionally, many attorneys work on a contingency basis; meaning they won’t charge any fees unless you win your case and receive compensation for your injuries.
Having the expertise of a lawyer on your side can give you peace of mind and confidence as you navigate the legal process, especially if you are injured and in need of rest and medical attention.
Finally, on What to do in a Bike Accident
The aftermath of a motorcycle accident can be traumatic and overwhelming, but it’s important to remain calm and take the necessary steps to ensure your safety and wellbeing.
By moving to a safe place, keeping your gear on, calling 911, gathering documents, and hiring an attorney if necessary, you can help protect yourself and get the best possible outcome should you be involved in a motorcycle accident.
With the right knowledge and preparation, you can help ensure your safety and get the justice that you deserve.
Good luck out there and stay safe!
About the author:
Dixie Somers is a freelance writer who loves to write for business, health, and women’s interests. She lives in Arizona with her husband and three beautiful daughters.
Photo by wickenden