You may enjoy biking on a regular basis in Miami. Taking a bike ride in Miami is a great source of exercise and a form of freedom, after all.
However, you may not have thought of the possibility of getting into a bicycle accident. Even if you are extremely safe, there’s always the chance that something could happen. This is why it’s important to be prepared if it does.
Riding bikes can be fun, but there are certain scenarios that can lead to an accident. Here are things to do after a bicycle accident to ensure you receive a fair amount for your injuries and damage to your bike.
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1. Call the Miami Police
As soon as the accident occurs, it is important for you, or someone who is nearby, to call the police. Then, you must wait for the police to arrive at the scene. Once they get there, they will take a complete police report and file it.
Even if you don’t think you are injured, you must stay for the police to write the report. Many Miami cyclists who have been in an accident don’t realize they are injured until several hours after the accident.
Plus, some injuries that seem minor at the time end up causing more serious or chronic problems later on. If you ride away from the accident before the police can identify the at-fault driver, you may be stuck paying expensive medical bills later on.
Even if the driver seems to be apologetic, it’s important that the Miami police make a report. You can’t take someone’s word that they were at fault. Often, the driver may admit blame at the scene of the bike accident, but later deny it or even act as if they weren’t even there.
The Miami police will provide proof of the accident and may even ticket the driver. This could help settle your case with the insurance company later on.
2. Give Your Statement
When the police officer is writing up the report on the accident, make sure you share your version of the accident. Sometimes, a police officer will take a statement from the driver but skip talking to the bicyclist.
You have the right to share your side of the story. So do everything you can to have it written into the police report.
Be sure to include all of your injuries, even if it is just a minor scratch or burn. As mentioned, those could turn into something more severe later on.
Unfortunately, the police officer may not include your statement in the police report. If this is the case, then you can later have the report amended.
3. Get the Driver’s Name
While you are still at the scene of the accident, it’s important to take down the driver’s information, including their name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, vehicle license number, and insurance information.
It also can’t hurt to get the names and contact information of everyone who was a witness to the Miami bike accident. You can’t assume that the police report will have this. If you are too injured to collect this information yourself, ask a bystander to do it for you.
It’s important during times like these to be your own advocate. The police officer won’t be thinking of your settlement.
4. Take Mental Notes of the Miami Bicycle Accident
After a Miami bicycle accident, you might be in a state of shock. This can make it difficult to remember some details later on.
Be prepared to take in your surroundings, make mental notes of what happened, how it occurred, where and when it took place in Miami, as well as the road conditions, traffic, and weather conditions.
If you can’t write these things down right away, such as on your phone, then be sure to write everything down as soon as you can. You might also want to take a voice recording on your phone describing everything that took place.
5. Keep the Evidence
Don’t get rid of any evidence from the accident. This includes your helmet, clothing, and bike.
Plus, you don’t want to change their condition either. Refrain from getting anything fixed and don’t wash your clothing.
Also, don’t share your equipment with anyone other than your attorney. Document the damage with photos of your equipment.
6. Seek Medical Help
It’s important to visit a medical professional directly after a bike accident in Miami, even if you have minor injuries. It’s important to seek medical help not only to make sure you are okay, but also to prove you were injured. Plus, your doctor will document the extent of the injuries.
It’s also important to take photos of your injuries as soon as you can after the accident. Then, continue to take notes in a journal on how you are feeling and any physical symptoms that arise.
Consult a Miami Personal Injury Attorney
If you take the steps above after a Miami bicycle accident, you’ll be in good shape when you go to court. This is when a personal injury attorney can step in and defend your case.
Makes sure you find someone who understands and handles bicycling or bike accident cases in Miami. They are going to tell you exactly how to proceed and negotiate with insurance companies for your best settlement.
It’s important not to speak with any insurance companies prior to speaking with an attorney. Your attorney is going to help you get the most from your case, whereas the insurance company wants to pay out as little as possible.
Often, your attorney can send a letter to the insurance company and settle your case without ever going to trial.
If you need the professional advice of an attorney for your bicycle accident, contact us today!