Getting struck by a careless driver while cycling through Oakland can leave you in a lot of pain. If you watch that motorist speed away from the scene a moment later, you may also feel completely powerless and alone.
A hit-and-run accident can leave riders wondering how they’ll pay their emergency room bills and the physical therapy that follows. Fortunately, the skilled Oakland Bicycle Accident Lawyers at Quirk Reed, LLP know how to secure vital support for victims, even if a hit-and-run suspect is never caught.
Contact our attorneys to schedule a free hit-and-run bicycle accident case consultation today. Find out what your case may be worth and let us help you determine every party you can call on for support after a frightening bicycle collision.
Hit-And-Run Bicycle Accident Dangers in Oakland
Oakland has been working in recent years to make the city more bicycle friendly. Normal bike lanes and protected lanes, like those along Telegraph Avenue, have been added. Unfortunately, the biggest change needed is in the attention levels of careless drivers. Drivers must work harder to notice the cyclists traveling around them and they must be prepared to accept full responsibility when they cause scary accidents.
This lack of accountability is a dangerous threat to the safety of injured Oakland cyclists and their recovery. A driver who flees the scene after striking someone on a bike often leaves the victim in the path of other vehicles. A debilitated victim may also be waiting longer for lifesaving ambulance care when there’s no one around to call 911.
California’s Transportation Injury Mapping System (TIMS) recorded 89 bicycle accidents involving injury in Oakland in 2021. 12 of those accidents involved felony hit-and-run charges for a driver.
A recent study published by Quirk Reed, LLP highlighted where bicycle accidents occur most often in Oakland. Telegraph Avenue and its intersections with 23rd, 24th, and 25th Streets always form a dangerous stretch for riders. The busy area of Broadway and Grand Avenue provides additional challenges for cyclists where no bike lanes exist.
These are also prime areas where drivers can accidentally ram cyclists and then take off, hoping to avoid prosecution. San Francisco police can work off of security camera footage and witness testimony, but, sadly, they often can’t identify a guilty driver.
What to Do After You’ve Been Struck by an Oakland Hit-And-Run Driver
Your actions after an Oakland hit-and-run bicycle accident will depend on how badly you’ve been injured. Unfortunately, you’ll also find some of the best evidence available on the scene of your collision. This information could help police track down a hit-and-run driver or assist in your injury claim to prove you weren’t at fault for your crash.
See to your immediate safety first, but if you are left strong enough, try to gather a few details on the scene of your Oakland hit-and-run accident:
- If possible, move out of the way of traffic. The driver who struck you may have been the only person to see you go down. Sadly, a hit-and-run driver probably won’t stick around to block traffic and protect you from other cars. Get to a safe spot, especially at night when drivers will be less likely to see you.
- Take notes. If you happened to see the license plate of the vehicle that hit you, jot it down or type it into your phone before you forget. Add a description of the car with everything you remember. If you got a good look at the driver, write down every detail.
- Dial 911 if you are able. A hit-and-run driver probably won’t be calling 911 for you. Let EMTs check out every pain you have. Give police a full report of what happened and give them any notes you took.
- Take photos of your hit-and-run accident scene. Get pictures of street signs, bike lanes, and the damage to your bike. Show any visible injuries.
- Find out if there are security cameras nearby. Cameras on businesses or homes might have documented your accident. Your Oakland Bicycle Accident Lawyer will secure this footage for your case.
- Find out what witnesses saw and get contact information for your attorney.
- Schedule a medical check-up with your own doctor in the days that follow. Follow your doctor’s instructions about physical therapy and seeing specialists.
- Keep your damaged bicycle. Keep damaged clothing.
How Can I Get Compensation After an Oakland Hit-And-Run Bicycle Accident?
Fortunately, injured cyclists have paths to receiving recovery support, even if a hit-and-run driver is successful in avoiding identification.
An Oakland bicycle accident attorney will help you decide when it’s time to file your accident claim and whom to send it to. There will be two main options after a hit-and-run bicycle crash:
- Filing with your own Car Insurance Company. If Oakland police can’t track down the hit-and-run driver, you may file a bicycle accident claim with your own car insurance provider if you have one. This would involve the uninsured motorist coverage most auto insurance policyholders have. Your own insurance coverage would provide money to help pay for your hospital bills. Unfortunately, they’ll still try to limit the compensation you receive, so it’s a good idea to have a skilled attorney fighting to get all of your bills covered. If you don’t have car insurance of your own, it’s important to check if another family member’s policy covers you.
- Filing with the hit-and-run driver’s car insurance. If the hit-and-run driver is arrested, you’ll be filing an accident claim with the suspect’s car insurance company. And you won’t have to wait on the results of any criminal trial the suspect faces. Your civil hit-and-run injury claim is filed separately and negotiated separately. Your attorney can submit a claim as soon as your case is ready and begin negotiating for the maximum compensation available.
Contact an Oakland Bicycle Hit-And-Run Lawyer
We are strong advocates for safe rides in Oakland. That means defending the rights of hardcore cyclists. We also safeguard the rights of parents and children who simply want to take a safe bike ride together through a local neighborhood.
If you or a loved one are struck by a hit-and-run driver on an Oakland street, don’t give up hope on earning support. Contact Quirk Reed right away to schedule a free case review to find out just who should be providing you with compensation.
If you decide our Oakland bicycle accident lawyers can help you get the most out of your bicycle accident claim, you worry about having the money to hire us. We don’t get paid unless we win your case.