COVID-19 and the resulting lockdowns saw a resurgence in people out cycling and walking. Indeed, the UK government is keen to encourage us to keep up the trend with its Cycle to Work Scheme. Officials calculated that illness as a result of physical inactivity costs the NHS up to £1 billion per year, in addition to other indirect costs estimated at over £8 million.
It is reported that around 180,000 people per year participate in the scheme and studies prove that cycling regularly can prevent significant illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and colon cancer. With over a million people benefitting from the scheme since it began, it’s clear that, as a nation, we appreciate the health and economic benefits of cycling. However, our roads are still full of traffic and accidents inevitably happen as a result.
Nobody wants to have an accident, but it is wise to be prepared for the unfortunate event of being involved in one. This blog explores some of the things to remember if you are involved in, or witness to, a cycling-related accident.
7 things to do after a cycling accident
Here are some important things to remember to do, which will hopefully help you get sorted and back on your bike again. Try to stay calm, even if you’re in shock, as getting upset or angry will only cloud your judgement and escalate the situation unhelpfully.
1. Stay safe
Firstly, get yourself, and if possible, your bike out of the road, unless you are too injured to move – in which case you should stay where you are until the ambulance arrives and a medic can check you over. Also, ask for help. Nine times out of ten, someone will stop to help anyway, but if no one is around then phone someone or call 999.
2. Visit A&E or your GP
Check for injuries. Don’t just get back on your bike and ride off, even if you feel fine, as you might be more injured than you think. You could be concussed or have whiplash, even if you haven’t knocked your head. Seek medical advice straight away, either by going to A&E or visiting your GP, to have them assess any injuries, as they might be significant in an insurance claim. It is also important to check that others involved in the accident are OK and don’t have any injuries for the same reasons.
3. Get details
Make sure you get the contact details of the other person involved in the accident. You need their name, email and postal addresses, phone number, in addition to their vehicle registration, colour and model if appropriate. You should also note down the details of anyone who was a witness to what happened.
4. Gather evidence
If there is a CCTV camera in the vicinity, try to gain access to the footage, as this could be provide invaluable proof of who was at fault in the accident. Take photos of the scene with the vehicles involved in position, in addition to taking pictures of any road defects if that was what caused the accident – preferably with an object, such as a water bottle, to help scale the images.
This is when your cycling camera will come into its own, as you will have high-definition footage of the incident recorded on an SD card, ready to prove who was at fault. At the time of the accident, you might not remember all the details, as you’ll be in shock, so let your camera remember for you. In the event of the guilty party driving off, you will still have their registration, car model and colour recorded for the police to track down.
Keep damaged items as evidence and don’t replace or repair them until you’ve had permission from your insurer, or the other party’s insurer if they were at fault, as this might impact your insurance claim.
5. Report to the police
If the emergency services weren’t already notified at the time of the incident, then make sure you report it to the police as soon as you realistically can within 24 hours. You have an obligation to report an accident where someone was injured, even if it’s yourself.
6. Call your insurer
Obviously, this is not something you do from the side of the road. But as soon as it’s possible, call your insurer with all the details of the accident. They will want to know what, when, who, where and how. Your video footage will make their job easier. When you call them, you will need to know an estimate of what it will cost to repair any damages and how long it will take.
7. What not to do!
Firstly, don’t agree to pay any compensation to another party without the permission and advice of your insurer. Otherwise, you could impact your claim. If the insurer of the other party makes you an offer of a settlement or compensation, don’t accept it without taking advice first.
And secondly, don’t agree that it was your fault. Even if you feel responsible morally or emotionally, you may not be legally liable and you should always let your insurer make the final decision when it comes to whether or not there is a claim to be made against you.
Where can I get a good cycling camera?
At Techalogic, we have a comprehensive range of high-quality cameras that can be mounted to your helmet or the frame of your bike. They capture photo and video footage in high resolution and, with water resistance and long battery life, they are an ideal safety investment. We supply front and rear-facing cameras and even have models that are integrated into front and rear lights for added visibility. This is in addition to a unique helmet camera that records front and back views simultaneously.
We also supply a range of accessories, such as high-vis chest and helmet straps, to help other road users notice you and, hopefully, reduce the risk of an accident in the first place.
Get in touch today to talk to one of our experts, who can advise you on the best camera set-up for your own unique needs or give you any information you may require about any of the safety cameras in our range.