At Thomas, Conrad & Conrad, our attorneys advise clients who like to ride to stay vigilant and aware of their surroundings to avoid potential hazards, but sometimes a crash is inevitable. Unfortunately, when a motorcyclist is involved in an accident they can face significant challenges, especially when a motorcycle crash involves a hit-and-run driver. Knowing what to do after a motorcycle hit and run accident can help protect your rights and may even improve your chances of tracking down a negligent driver.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2018 alone more than 82,000 motorcyclists were injured in crashes in the United States. Motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to serious injuries when involved in a crash, as they have nothing surrounding them except their protective gear and (hopefully) a helmet. Victims of motorcycle hit and run accidents often suffer from:
- Road rash
- Broken or crushed bones
- Head, neck, and spine injuries
- Traumatic brain injury
- Internal injuries
These types of injuries can require extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation, including surgeries, hospital stays, physical and occupational therapy, and even ongoing, lifelong care. If you’re hurt in a motorcycle hit and run accident, it can be daunting to think about who will pay your medical bills, wage loss, and other expenses.
Steps To Take After A Motorcycle Hit And Run Accident
After a motorcycle hit and run accident, it’s best to call 911 or local authorities right away. The sooner you can give law enforcement a vehicle description, license plate number, any other identifying information, the better. If there were any witnesses who may have seen what happened, make sure to get their contact information and statements if possible. Use the voice recorder on your phone or write down everything you can remember about how the hit and run accident occurred.
Take photos of your bike, the scene, your injuries and anything else you may think could be helpful or relevant. If you’re seriously injured and unable to do this yourself, ask a bystander or police officer for assistance. Obtain a copy of the police report at the scene if you can. Even if the hit-and-run driver isn’t found, this evidence is crucial to provide proof of the accident and your injuries if you file a claim with your motorcycle insurance company. Contacting a local personal injury attorney for a free consultation can help you figure out your options for recovering compensation for your medical bills, wage loss, and other damages.
The most important thing you can do after a collision is to seek medical attention immediately. Even if you think you feel fine, symptoms of many injuries don’t appear until later. If you are suffering from a concussion, another type of brain injury, or internal bleeding, failing to get medical treatment right away could be fatal.
Notify Your Motorcycle Insurance Company
If a hit-and-run driver can’t be found, the best way to recover compensation for your injuries and property damage is through the uninsured motorist (UI) coverage on your own motorcycle insurance policy. That’s why paying a little more to ensure you have adequate coverage is always well worth it. Your medical insurance may cover a portion or all of your medical bills as well.
Even your own motorcycle insurance company may attempt to minimize the severity of your injuries, offer very little compensation, or deny your claim altogether. If an insurance adjuster gives you a hard time, a motorcycle accident attorney can act as your advocate and fight to help you recover the compensation you need and deserve to safeguard your health and finances.
A motorcycle accident attorney can also pursue any other avenues of compensation that may be available. For example, even if a driver who left the scene is the one who caused you to swerve and run into a guardrail, if your brakes failed, the parts manufacturer may be liable for any damages caused. Your lawyer can keep in contact with law enforcement to find out if there are any leads in your motorcycle hit and run case. If the negligent motorist is found, your accident attorney may be able to recover compensation from them or their insurer.
Contact A Motorcycle Accident Attorney
At Thomas, Conrad & Conrad, our personal injury attorneys understand that being hurt in a motorcycle hit and run accident is traumatic. We serve injured victims throughout eastern Pennsylvania and are dedicated to helping to make things right for clients and their families. Contact us online or call our Bethlehem office at 610-867-2900 to schedule a free consultation today. We have three additional locations in Topton, Allentown, and Stroudsburg, PA.