We have seen it before with cases we have worked on. Our client was sitting at a stop light on their Harley Davidson Motorcycle waiting for the light to turn green when another driver who was approaching the stop light turned around to look at their child in the back seat or was too busy responding to a text message and did not stop, running into our client and turning their life upside down. Before this tragic event our client loved nothing more than riding their motorcycle throughout the Kansas City area. The open road that they once loved exploring on their motorcycle represented true freedom to them and because of the negligence of another they no longer wanted to ride their motorcycles. While they knew that all modes of transportation came with their share of dangers but they did not think this could happen to them as they were a very skilled and experienced driver but it did.
Common Motorcycle Injuries
Common motorcycle injuries include broken bones, facial disfigurement, burns, and road rash. After you (hopefully) get up after the wreck you need to realize the steps you take after the accident (or as we say wreck) may have significant repercussions in regard to the remedies you have available. Here are a few tips you should adhere to if you are involved in a motorcycle accident:
- Check yourself and others for injuries. Your health is the most important thing in the world. Do not admit fault at the scene as well. Very few accidents are cut and dry as to liability. You may think you caused the wreck but you could be wrong so do not accept blame. It is fine to inquire as to how others are doing (and you should) but do not offer an apology especially if you were not at fault as the other party will use that statement against you in Court. So please just stick to the facts and see how others are doing. Furthermore, do not agree to just “forget about the whole ordeal” and go your separate ways with the other driver. Many injuries do not manifest until much later after the wreck and you may need to be compensated for your medical bills and pain and suffering.
- Call 911. Report the accident. You will not be held liable for the accident because you were the one who placed the call for help. In fact, speaking with the police is crucial for building your case. The police’s job is to interview all the parties involved in the wreck, any witnesses who saw the motorcycle accident and can say whose fault it was, take photos as evidence, and document every detail of the accident for a police report. Be sure to cooperate fully and never admit fault to the officer or the other driver. The information collected for the police report will be used in Court.
- Take pictures of the scene from your phone from various angles. Documenting the motorcycle and surrounding environment will help you with your case.
- Gather information from the other driver and all the witnesses. Take pictures of insurance information, drivers’ licenses, vehicle information (including license plate numbers), and of your motorcycle and the damages to it.
- Go get medical attention if you think there may be an issue. Do not assume you are not hurt. As mentioned earlier, many injuries that result from motorcycle and car accidents do not manifest themselves for hours or even days or weeks after the wreck. You need to go get checked out by a professional.
- Inform your insurance agent of the wreck and ask for your insurance policy so you can determine if you have PIP or Med-Pay available to cover any medical payments you need to pay for treating physicians.
- Contact an experienced personal injury attorney. There are a multitude of reasons why you need an attorney to protect your rights and make sure you get the compensation that you deserve.
Based on per mile traveled, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that motorcycle crash deaths occur 28 times more frequently than those involving other types of passenger vehicles. It is essential that you practice motorcycle safety and abstain from risk-taking when riding a motorcycle, as you or the fault of another negligent driver can easily result in a catastrophic crash. If you have been in an unfortunate wreck, please remember the steps listed above.