Portland has always been a popular city for bicyclists. Amidst shutdowns and disruptions of normal services during the coronavirus pandemic, increasing numbers of people are engaging in bike riding both as a means of transportation and as a way of getting some physical exercise. Unfortunately, bicycle accidents in Portland occur on a regular basis and can result in serious, potentially life-threatening personal injuries. Victims involved in crashes and collisions need to be aware both of what to do and what not to do if a bicycle accident does occur.
What to Do When a Bicycle Accident Happens
According to statistics from Portland’s Vision Zero program, bicycle accidents represent only a small portion of the overall number of traffic crashes and collisions that occur within the city each year. However, bicycle accidents do leave dozens of people suffering serious injuries and may be more likely to occur during the coronavirus pandemic, as people look for safe ways to get outdoors and pass the time.
When a bicycle accident does happen, there are important things you need to do to protect your health and your rights in filing a claim. This includes:
- Report the accident immediately to the police;
- Make note of the driver involved and a description of their vehicle;
- Get the at-fault driver’s license, vehicle registration, and insurance numbers;
- Make sure any police reports include the exact time of day and where the bike accident occurred;
- Get medical treatment as soon as possible;
- Follow all your doctor’s instructions regarding follow-up care and activity restrictions;
- Speak with our Portland bicycle accident attorneys before making statements to insurers or accepting any settlements.
What NOT to Do After a Bicycle Accident In Portland
In many cases, knowing what not to do after a bike accident in Portland is equally important in terms of protecting yourself and your rights:
- Do NOT downplay the seriousness of your bike accident. Even if your bicycle accident appears minor, you may have suffered serious injuries.
- Do NOT fail to report it: Bicyclists are required to follow certain rules and regulations under the Oregon Statutes, the same as any other road user. Failing to report an accident will impact your rights in a claim and could result in criminal charges.
- Do NOT downplay your damages: Bicycle accident injuries can lead to many potentially debilitating and life threatening conditions. Symptoms often take days or weeks to appear.
- Do NOT agree on a private settlement: Do not agree to a private settlement with the at-fault driver in exchange for not reporting the accident.
- Do NOT admit any blame: Even if you suspect you were partially at-fault, do not admit this to the driver or insurer. Speak with our Portland bicycle accident about this first.
Let Us Help You Today
When bicycle accidents happen, the Johnston Law Firm P.C. acts as a strong legal ally on your side. Before taking actions that could jeopardize your rights, call (503) 546-3167 or contact our Portland bicycle accident attorneys online to schedule a consultation first.