Although a bicycle mishap sounds far less daunting than a car crash, the implications may be grave. Imagine being hit by a speeding car or truck because the injuries may be far more severe than a car accident. A bicycle rider is at high risk as the vehicle does not offer protection. You may get away with a few scratches or end up with life-changing injuries like amputation, brain damage, or traumatic brain injury.
It is better to be prepared with awareness about dealing with bicycle mishaps, specifically when you suffer due to someone’s negligence. As a victim, you must do everything to ensure punishment for the perpetrator. At the same time, you should take relevant measures to get your life back on track. Here are some actionable tips for handling the aftermath of a bicycle mishap.
Move to a safe spot
An accident is dangerous, whether it occurs on a busy road or empty lane. Moving to a safe spot can save you from further risk of being hit by another vehicle. Try moving off the roadway or ask someone for help. But you may stay put if you suspect neck or back injury. You can request bystanders to divert traffic and call 911 to provide emergency first aid and care. Besides moving to a safe spot, you must also gather details of the mishap. Note down as much as you can, with details regarding the other vehicle, road conditions, time, and witness information. Call the police so that they can prepare an accident report.
Prioritize medical attention
Medical attention should be your priority whenever you get into a road accident. It is easy to take a bike mishap frivolously, particularly when you feel fine after the fall or crash. But a medical check is essential to rule out the possibility of internal injuries like internal bleeding, nerve damage, or organ injury. The last thing you want to face is a major complication surfacing a couple of days after the accident only because you ignored minor injuries. A medical check is vital from a legal perspective as you will require reports and diagnostics to prove the injuries while claiming compensation.
Seek legal advice
If the crash involves a guilty driver, there is a legal angle to the case because you can claim compensation under the personal injury law. Connect with a specialist bicycle accident lawyer sooner rather than later to seek guidance about claiming rightful compensation. You can ask a loved one to contact a lawyer if you are severely injured or bedridden, but do not delay advice. The last thing you should do is settle for a lowball compensation offer from the driver’s insurance company. A lawyer can calculate the apt value considering your injuries, damages, and the cost of pain and suffering. They also negotiate with the insurance company or handle the litigation in court if needed.
Choose your words wisely
Accident victims often miss out on their rights because of the wrong choice of words. Insurance companies do their best to make them admit guilt or settle for an inadequate compensation value. Seasoned personal injury attorneys emphasize choosing your words wisely. In fact, you should not try to negotiate with the guilty driver or their insurance company yourself. Also, avoid admitting fault or accusing others when the police take your statement. Try to describe the events in detail without claiming responsibility for the mishap.
Focus on recovery
Getting your compensation after a bicycle mishap can get your finances on track. But you must focus on physical and emotional recovery to resume normalcy in your personal and professional life. Proper medical treatment and rehab get you on the road to physical recovery. If the injury is debilitating, consider home modifications and lifestyle changes. You may also discuss changes in work arrangements with your employer. Seek support from your family to help with your daily tasks. You may also suffer from emotional trauma, so do not ignore the signs of PTSD or depression. Open up about your mental state and see a therapist if necessary. You may even get compensation for counselling therapy, provided you include it in your claim.
Getting life on track after a bicycle accident may not be easy if you are severely injured. But you can resume normalcy by embracing a positive mindset. Claim compensation, focus on recovery, and work on regaining your confidence. Do not give up on cycling after recovery because the road is still the same, but you can be a better rider!