Home TRAVEL TIPS Do You Know What To Do After a Scooter Accident

Do You Know What To Do After a Scooter Accident

Electric scooters are a great way to get around a town or city without needing to invest in a motor vehicle outright. Scooters are eco-friendly and inexpensive, and you don’t need to worry about finding a parking space. 

In busy downtowns, not having to pay for parking is always a bonus. Some cities even have scooters you can rent for an hour or even a day. You pay a nominal rental fee, and off you go. When you’re finished, just return the scooter to a rental kiosk. However, scooters can also be dangerous. On average 20 per 100,000 scooter trips resulted in injury that can range from mild to severe.

If you’re involved in a scooter accident, do you know what to do? Your next steps can affect your ability to receive compensation for your damages.

Regardless of the type of scooter accident, the steps you should take remain the same. Doing so can make it a little easier to recover compensation for your damages, and this can even apply if you’re partially to blame for the accident. 

Also, don’t forget that Florida is a comparative negligence state, which means as long as you’re not more than 50% to blame for the scooter accident, you can still file an injury claim.

Assess Yourself for Injuries

This step goes without saying, and it’s also probably second nature. After all, every time you fall, your first instinct is usually to check for any injuries, and this also applies after being involved in a scooter accident. Even though you’re not falling very far, injuries can still be significant, and this can be especially true if your scooter accident involves a run-in with a larger motor vehicle.

Even if your injuries are minor or you think everything’s okay, it’s still a good idea to schedule a visit with your primary care provider. Some injuries can take a while to appear, and you don’t want to take a risk with your health. You’re also going to need your medical records if you decide to pursue a personal injury claim. Your medical records document your injuries and provide the necessary proof.

File an Accident Report

Are you legally required to report your scooter accident to the authorities? The answer depends on the extent of your injuries and property damage. If a fatality occurs, an involved driver is intoxicated, or property damages exceed $500, under Florida law the accident must be reported. There aren’t any exceptions. Even if none of this applies to your scooter accident, it’s still a good idea to notify the authorities.

However, if you and any other involved parties decide to exchange insurance information and go your separate ways, you’re not out of luck. You can still file an accident report as long as it’s not more than ten days from the date of the incident.

Why do you want to report the scooter accident? Just like your medical records provide proof of your injuries, the accident report shows the incident occurred. Without an incident report insurance companies are going to be reluctant to settle your claim. Your word is rarely enough to satisfy the insurance company’s burden of proof.

Your accident report also contains other details that can help bolster your claim like witness statements and diagrams of the incident.

After filing an accident report, it usually takes around seven business days before it’s ready. You can request a copy of the accident report online. The process is simple but be ready to pay a small fee, typically around $10.

Collect Evidence

If your injuries are severe, don’t worry about turning into an amateur detective. Let the authorities take care of collecting evidence. Your only job is to focus on your health. However, if you’re able go ahead and gather evidence to help support your personal injury claim.

What type of evidence are you looking for? Okay, put away your gloves and other crime scene investigation equipment. Grab a camera, the one on your phone is perfect, and start snapping some pictures of the accident scene. Take pictures of any damage to the scooter and of your injuries. 

Don’t worry about the damage to any other involved vehicles; let the authorities handle this part of evidence gathering. Sometimes emotions are running high after an accident, and you don’t want to make a tense situation worse. Keep your distance and focus on the damage to yourself and your property.

You can talk to any witnesses, but don’t discuss accident details. Anything you say can be used against you when you’re trying to reach a settlement with the insurance company, and this also includes when you’re giving your statement to the police. Stick to the relevant details and never offer an apology. 

Even if the accident is obviously not your fault, your simple apology can be taken out of context. The defendant may imply your apology is an admission of guilt.

Contact Your Insurance Provider

You’ll want to alert your insurance provider of the accident as soon as possible. This way, you can get started on the claims process. Don’t worry if you don’t have a copy of the police report. You’re just getting the ball slowly rolling.

Remember to keep the accident details brief. This also includes information about your injuries. Your accident is still evolving, and you don’t want to get locked into a particular scenario. For example, you may think you only suffered some cuts and scrapes but you still don’t know the full extent of your injuries.

Insurance adjusters are also notorious for showing up almost as soon as they’re notified. 

While this prompt service is usually great, it’s not what you want after a scooter accident. Don’t accept the initial settlement offer. Often, it’s not enough to cover all of your damages. Once you accept an offer from the insurance company, you can’t go back and refile a claim.

Schedule a Consultation with a Personal Injury Attorney

Prioritizing your health is essential following a scooter accident, but once your immediate medical needs are addressed, seeking legal counsel becomes more important than ever. Consulting with an experienced attorney, especially one well-versed in Florida’s personal injury statutes, is a vital step in navigating the aftermath of such incidents. 

An experienced lawyer not only understands the specifics of Florida law, but they also can offer strategic advice and representation to advocate for your rights effectively. They can meticulously assess the details of your case, guide you through the legal complexities, and diligently work to secure the compensation you deserve for your injuries and related losses, ensuring that your legal journey is handled with the utmost care and expertise.