By Logan Quirk
If you have been in a motorbike accident in Los Angeles, you know that the minutes and hours after the crash can go by in a blur. You might be injured, in shock or in denial that you are hurt, wondering where your bike is and when you’re going to get it back. Long hours in the hospital can follow, and you are likely to be questioned by police and doctors over and over again.
Through all of this chaos, you need to protect your legal rights and make sure that you are looked after. Choosing and calling a lawyer should be on your mind, but there are other things you need to consider. The team here at Quirk Law have compiled this list of things that you need to do in the minutes after a motorbike crash.
In the minutes after the crash, you need to:
- Check for injury – If you get into a collision with a truck, car or any other vehicle, you (as the motorcyclist) are the most likely to be injured. That said, you should assess all other vehicles to ensure that everyone is ok. Administer minor first aid if you are able, and then make sure you call 911.
- Call 911 – Police are dispatched to most motor vehicle accidents automatically, but you should call 911 no matter what. This will ensure that an ambulance arrives quickly. Let the operator know about the accident and tell them if anyone is hurt (including yourself) and the degree to which they are injured.
- Take photos of the scene, your bike and yourself – Use your cel phone to take photos of the entire scene, including your own injuries (including cuts and scrapes), the other vehicles, the scene itself and your entire motorbike.
- Never accept blame – Always remember that anything you say can be used against you by the other person’s insurance company. Never apologize. Never say “I didn’t see that stop light/ car/ sign/ etc.” Do not say anything at all about liability. Less is always more at the scene of an accident.
- Get the other party’s insurance information
The other driver might be unwilling to cooperate with you, but you need to try to get their insurance information, contact information, driver’s license and license plate info. If possible, take photos of all of this.
- Try to get contact info from potential witnesses – It is not up to you to try to take ‘witness statements’ from anyone who potentially saw the accident, but you should try to get their names and phone numbers if possible.
- Speak to the police – You need to provide a clear and detailed account of what happened to the police, but continue to avoid taking blame for any aspect of the accident. You need to speak to an LA accident lawyer before you make any potential statements about blame.
- See a Doctor – No matter how minor you think your accident may have been, you need to go to the doctor’s office or emergency room to have a complete medical check up. Even ‘minor’ head trauma or neck injuries can lead to severe medical problems, and they can take days or weeks to appear. If an ambulance is offered to you, you should take it. Make sure to fully and accurately report all pain during your exam.