For many of us, a bicycle is the preferred way to get around for a large part of the year. It’s green technology, a great way to get outdoors, and gets us from point A to point B while getting in some exercise. Unfortunately, biking can also be inherently dangerous, especially when it comes to sharing the road with cars. Sadly, biking accidents are all too common and have the potential to result in serious injuries.
If you’ve been injured while riding a bicycle, you have the same rights as any other injured party. This includes seeking compensation from someone who caused your injury through negligence, recklessness, or malice. If you’ve been hit by a car while on your bike, don’t let motorists or their insurance agents intimidate you and tell you it’s your fault for not watching for cars. Cyclists have equal rights, both on the road and in courtrooms. If you’re injured by a motorist, seeking compensation for medical expenses and other damages is one of those fundamental rights.
What To Do If You’re Injured in a Bicycle Accident in Georgia
Seek Medical Care
In the immediate aftermath of a bicycle accident, look out for your own safety and well-being first and foremost. If you need an ambulance or medical attention, arrange for transportation as quickly as possible. If you believe you may have suffered a neck or spine injury, try to move as little as possible until a medical professional has evaluated you.
In the modern world, collecting evidence at the scene of an accident is usually as simple as snapping photos with your camera phone. Get pictures of the scene, your injuries, your bicycle, and any damage to any vehicles or property. Also make a note of any security cameras covering the general area. The court officials, police, or your lawyer may attempt to access a copy of such footage if necessary. Any evidence you gather can be shared with the police. However, be sure to save a copy for yourself so that you can provide it to your legal counsel later on.
Contact the Authorities
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident and intend to sue for damages, it will be important later to have a valid and complete police report. Call the nearest municipal police department, sheriff’s office, or state police outpost to get a law enforcement professional sent to the scene. Note that in serious accidents, a single 911 call should be sufficient to get both police and medical responders to the scene. Unless you are in the process of receiving emergency medical attention, be sure to make yourself available to the police to answer any and all questions. Do not get into an argument with the other party at the scene of the accident. This will not help your case. Answer the officer’s questions clearly and calmly.
If you’re in a condition to do so, make sure you get complete contact information for anyone else involved in the accident. This should include their full name, driver’s license, license plate, and insurance carrier information.
Determine If You Qualify for a Claim
It’s not always easy to know if you have a valid personal injury claim under Georgia law. For a personal injury case stemming from a bicycle accident to move forward in the Georgia courts, you must be able to prove that someone else was at fault for the accident. This does not necessarily require proving intent. A person or company can still be held liable for your injury, even if it was caused by negligence or carelessness rather than malicious intent. The other factor that will determine if your bicycle accident is legally actionable is whether damages can be awarded. If you have incurred medical expenses or lost wages because of your bicycle accident, you might have a claim.
If you believe you have a personal injury claim related to a bicycle accident, your next step should be to contact the legal experts at Lamar Law Office, LLC for a confidential review of your case. We’ll help determine the appropriate next step for pursuing maximum damages under Georgia law.