Motorcycles, unlike other vehicles, have virtually no physical protection. Each year, 80,000 people suffer injuries in motorcycle accidents and there are many more fatalities in these accidents than in car crashes. If you are involved in an accident, you should act immediately to protect yourself and your legal rights.
Immediately move yourself and your motorcycle off the road. If you can stand, get your motorcycle and wheel it to a sidewalk, the highway’s side, or another safe area away from traffic. Find out whether anyone was injured and needs assistance.
Next, call for police, an ambulance or other needed assistance. If you are uninjured, use your smartphone to call 9-1-1. For this and other reasons, you should always take your phone when you ride your motorcycle.
If you cannot call for help because you are injured, ask another person to call 9-1-1 for you. Whoever makes this call should provide the accident location and indicate whether anyone was injured.
Speak with first responders
If you are seriously injured, you will be transported to the hospital as soon as possible. You can later speak with police when you are medically able.
If you do not need medical treatment when the police arrive, tell them how the accident occurred. Typically, they will prepare an accident report. Ask them for a copy of the report or contact information so you can obtain a report later.
Drivers may yell, swear or act threatening in these situations. Police can play a helpful role as a neutral peacemaker if there are any drivers who are angry or handling the situation poorly.
Exchange names, contact information, insurance carrier and policy number with other motorists involved in the accident. Obtain license plate numbers and the make of the vehicles. Use your phone to videotape and photograph the accident scene and the condition of your motorcycle and other vehicles involved in the crash.
Never admit any fault or apologize. Do not argue about the accident or discuss its details.
The names and contact information of any pedestrian, other drivers and witnesses are also important. They may have information which can assist you if you ever file a lawsuit.
You may need a tow truck if your motorcycle is inoperable. Keep all repair documents and receipts.
Visit a physician to assure that you were not injured. Obtain medical documents describing the extent of your injuries and any treatment for a possible legal action.
Notify your insurance company about the accident. Be truthful.
Do not answer questions from insurance companies representing other motorists without speaking to an attorney first. A lawyer can help pursue your right to compensation against negligent or reckless drivers.