A Guide To: Road Traffic Accident ClaimsPaul Woolliscroft
Unfortunately, road traffic accidents are a common occurrence in the UK with resultant injuries ranging in severity – from minor to serious, life altering injuries.
At Tinsdills, we assist clients by securing the strongest possible compensation to help cover losses incurred as a result of a road traffic accident. Some of the most common categories we work with are pedestrian, cyclist and motorcycle accident claims – and in this blog, we detail further information on making a claim and some helpful facts to help guide you through the process.
Motorcycle Accidents – Key facts and stats
Motorcyclists are vulnerable road users and are much more likely to be injured in an accident than motorists. This is because they have much less physical protection than those travelling in motor vehicles.
According to Department for Transport figures, in Great Britain, 19,297 motorcyclists were injured in reported road accidents in 2016, with 5,553 being seriously injured and 319 being killed, bearing out the vulnerable nature of motorcyclists. There are of course likely to be many more accidents than these as the figures only include those accidents reported by motorcyclists.
Most common types of motorcycle accidents
The most common types of motorcycling accidents include the following:-
- Other motorists emerging from a minor road into the path of the motorcyclist on a major road.
- Other motorists turning from a major road into a minor road across the path of the opposing motorcyclist.
- Turning or an emerging motor vehicle colliding with a filtering motorcyclist.
- The driver of a motor vehicle losing control of their own vehicle and colliding with the motorcyclist.
- The motorcyclist becoming injured as a result of the condition of the road, for example, striking a pothole or a missing drain cover.
What should I do if I am involved in an accident as a motorcyclist?
If you are able to, you should obtain the details of the motorist that has been involved in the accident including their registration number, make and model of the vehicle and also obtain their insurance details. If possible, take a photograph of the vehicle and any damage and take a description of the driver.
If possible, you should ensure that you take details of any witnesses to the accident and take photographs of the surrounding area if you are unfamiliar with it so that you can precisely identify the accident location. Check out the local area for any CCTV that may be available or any dashcam footage from any vehicles that may have stopped and witnessed your accident. You may, of course, have your own footage from your wearable technology.
If your accident is as a result of a defect in the road you should do the following:-
- Take a photograph of the pothole or defect, including measurements, together with a photograph of the surrounding area to provide context. If this is not possible at the time of your accident, return to the scene or ask someone to return for you and take photographs. At Tinsdills, we have a guide to photographing defects, please click here.
- Take details of any witnesses to the accident. Check the area for any CCTV footage that may be available or dashcam footage from any witnesses. You should also check your own footage from any wearable technology that you have.
Cycling Accidents – Key facts and stats
The number of cyclists in the UK has risen drastically in the last decade and this is a trend that looks set to continue with more people taking up cycling during the lockdown caused by the coronavirus.
Cyclists are particularly vulnerable road users as they are much more likely to be injured on the road than other road users who travel in motor vehicles. This is because they simply have much less protection than those travelling in motor vehicles.
According to Department for Transport figures, in 2018, 17,550 cyclists were injured in road accidents that were reported, included 4,205 who were seriously injured or killed, bearing out the vulnerable nature of cyclists. There are likely of course to be many more accidents than these on the roads as these figures are only the accidents reported by cyclists.
Most common types of cycling accidents
The most common types of cycling accidents include the following:-
- The cyclist being struck by a HGV either by the wing mirror or as a result of being in the HGV’s blind spot.
- The motorist pulling out into the path of a cyclist.
- The motorist turning into a junction and across the path of the cyclist.
- The cyclist being struck from behind having been unseen by the motorist.
- The overtaking motorist failing to allow enough space when overtaking the cyclist.
- The cyclist becoming injured as a result of the condition of the road, for example, striking a pothole.
Claiming after being hit by a motor vehicle
If you have been involved in an accident as a pedestrian and have been hit by a motor vehicle such as a car, van, lorry or motorbike, then you may be able to make a claim as a pedestrian against the person responsible.
As a vulnerable road user, you may well be more severely injured if you are struck by a motorist as you will not have any of the protection of other road users in vehicles. These injuries can often be serious and greatly affect your life.
The law will protect pedestrian victims of road traffic accidents. If you are injured through no fault of your own, perhaps after being struck by a motor vehicle whilst crossing the road or as a result of a motor vehicle mounting the pavement, then you could hold them to account and could be entitled to compensation related to the severity of your injuries.
Our solicitors are dedicated to providing helpful legal advice to all of our clients to ensure they get the amount of compensation and closure they deserve from accidents caused by motor vehicles whilst they are in the vulnerable position of being a pedestrian.
If you’ve been injured as a result of a road traffic accident, our friendly team of personal injury lawyers are well-versed in helping clients receive deserved compensation. Get in touch with us to discuss your claim.