According to the Minnesota Department of Health, in 1999, 5,000 bike accident victims received treatment for injuries. Of these accidents, approximately 500 bicyclists were injured in accidents involving cars. These accidents take an immense toll on victims and families, leading to visits to the emergency room, high medical expenses, lost time at work, lifestyle changes, and pain and suffering. According to the Minnesota Department of Health, a bicycle accident injury costs on average $49,000. The law provides important protections to bicycle accident victims, including the right to sue for injuries, expenses, and pain and suffering. There are several important steps that every bicycle accident victim can take to protect himself or herself following an accident. Of course, these steps are suggestions and each case is unique. A qualified accident attorney in Minneapolis may be able to better assist you in protecting your rights following a bicycle accident.
- Call the police after an accident occurs. If you’ve been in a bicycle accident, you should always call the police so that a proper police report can be made. Get as much information from the driver as possible, including insurance information and policy numbers. Avoid admitting blame. Let the police make a report of the facts. While the minutes after an accident can pass by quickly, other drivers may stop at the scene, and see things you miss. Take down the names and phone numbers of any witnesses who saw the accident take place.
- Seek out qualified medical attention. According to the New York Times, bicycle riding is the leading cause of head injuries. The American Neurological Association reports that 86,000 people suffered head injuries while biking. Traumatic brain injuries can sometimes not be evident immediately following an accident. In some cases, it can take days, to weeks, to even months before symptoms become apparent. Seeking out proper medical attention and following up with doctors is incredibly important to protect your rights.
- Retain all evidence from the accident. Evidence includes your damaged bike or photos of the bike, your damaged helmet, photos of the damage to the other vehicle, and copies of medical reports. Keep a file of all medical expenses and care you need to receive as a result of your accident. If there were witnesses present at the scene, make sure to get their names and numbers and remain in contact with them, as needed.
- Speak to a personal injury attorney in Minneapolis. A personal injury lawyer in Minneapolis is qualified to answer any questions you might have about your bicycle accident claim. Your accident attorney can interview witnesses, gather evidence, and ensure that you are getting the medical attention you need and deserve. The Law Office of Martin T. Montilino offers personal injury law representation in Minneapolis to victims of bicycle accidents. Martin T. Montilino will analyze your claim in light of the facts. In many ways, a bicycle accident is no different than any other car accident claim. At the end of the day, the negligent party is the one responsible to pay the victim’s medical expenses and injuries.