What Should You Do When There is a Collision with Electric Bike？
For the last couple of years, more people are shifting towards riding electric bikes instead of cars on their way to work, school, the nearby grocery store, etc. This is because of the convenience that e-bikes have brought to the table. For example, unlike a regular bicycle, you do not need to paddle-push your e-bike with a strong force. An e-bike is also a great way to skip traffic and move at a top speed while reaching your destination quicker than a regular bike or car.
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Despite all these benefits, a study has shown that e-bike accidents have risen to 74% due to their popularity in the previous three years. Furthermore, with more people using electronic bikes, this percentage will increase drastically in the future. Riding an e-bike carelessly can cause serious injuries, like brain damage or a severe spinal cord injury. In the USA, the average number of accidents caused by an electronic bike is around 25000, which is expected to increase this year, as more and more people tend to find alternatives to driving cars.
However, even when you have taken all the necessary safety measures to ride your e-bike, it does not mean that you are prone to accidents. Therefore, you must know what to do and how to handle the situation if you ever get into a collision while riding your electric bike.
In this article, we will discuss all the necessary steps you must take when you get into an e-bike accident, but before that, let us start with a few basics that are important to know as an e-bike rider. Keep reading below.
1. How are electric bicycle collisions caused?
Typically, there are three categories in which an e-bike rider comes, depending on the speed at which they can ride their bike.
Category 1: Riders with bikes that can travel only at the speed of 20 mph and require paddling.
Category 2: Riders with bikes that do not necessarily need paddling and move with a maximum speed of 20 mph.
Category 3: Riders with fully automatic e-bikes that travel at 28 mph.
In the USA, the riders in the third category of e-bikes can ride on the same road as other vehicles but in their own lane. They have to wear a helmet at all times while riding.
Hence, being part of the regular traffic, you must be aware that a mishap can occur at any time. So, it is essential to know what can cause an e-bike collision. A study reports that 80% of the time, e-bike accidents occur due to the rider's negligence, while only 20% of the latter occur because of bad roads or paths. Here are a few primary reasons that cause an electric bike collision.
The rider is a beginner or inexperienced: Most people who buy an electric scooter are entirely new to riding them. This is why you should not directly start riding your e-bike on the roads, especially if you are a category-3 rider. It is best to learn the basics and practice on the empty ground away from other vehicles and pedestrians.
Careless riding: As mentioned earlier, most e-bike accidents occur due to the rider's reckless behavior. Hence, you can hold the rider responsible for any loss if this happens.
Riding under the influence: Whether riding an e-bike, a regular bicycle, or any other vehicle, driving under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or other narcotics is strictly prohibited since it can cause severe incidents in the blink of an eye.
If you want to learn more about how e-bike accidents mostly happen, look at this video.
2. What should I do if I am involved in an electric bicycle accident?
Here are a few things you must remember to do if involved in an electric bike collision.
Seek medical assistance.
Vehicles on the road move at high speed, including e-bikes. Therefore, there is always a chance of getting into an accident if you are riding recklessly.
If involved in an e-bike accident, the first thing you must do is to call some professional help by contacting the emergency number. This can save your or someone else's life. If you are not in a position to make a call due to severe injury, ask someone else to do it for you. Reach out to the nearest hospital if you have to wait too long. However, calling a professional help immediately is essential even if there is no severe injury as they can help you with the insurance [procedures and damage policies.
Keep your evidence ready.
In any accident, keeping the evidence proper and ready is extremely important. Your insurance process and damage claim will become easier if you have appropriate proof. Therefore, it is best to note down the names and contact numbers of the people involved in the accident, along with clear pictures of the damaged vehicle and the whole scenario. You can ask the eyewitnesses to take photos of the spot, including you and all the damage caused.
Do not leave the accident spot without collecting all the necessary evidence, as these little things play a significant role when it comes to claiming your insurance or damage compensation from the opposite party.
Contact the police immediately.
If you cannot gather the evidence, it is important to call the police as soon as possible. The policeman will note down every intricate detail of the accident spot to create a report, such as the location of the collision, the involved parties, the damage caused to the vehicles, the contact numbers of eyewitnesses, visible injuries, etc.
Keep your social media at bay.
One of the most important things to remember when involved in an accident is to keep your social media away from the whole scenario. Though social media has become a significant part of our daily life, uploading everything on it, especially accidents, is not a good idea. Posting your e-bike crash online can work against you as insurance companies are fond of complicating things. Hence, avoiding posting or uploading anything on your social media related to the accident is best.
Consult a personal injury lawyer.
When you have collected all the necessary evidence of the accident, it is time to contact a personal injury lawyer. This can benefit you in several ways. A professional injury lawyer has all the expertise and experience to act professionally in such cases. For example, suppose the insurance company tries to put you in certain tricky positions to avoid compensation. In that case, a personal injury lawyer will be able to handle this more efficiently since you are not aware of the laws properly and can fall into the trap easily.
A personal injury lawyer has tons of experience analyzing the accident evidence and bringing solutions that will help strengthen your case. This way, you can also have a higher chance of gaining greater compensation from the insurance company for your personal and vehicle damage.
Consult a professional accident attorney.
It is essential to hire an experienced and professional accident attorney. This can quickly put you in a make-or-break kind of situation. Not hiring an attorney can make things more complicated, and you will only be able to recover a portion of your damage. Therefore, having an experienced accident attorney at your side will help you strengthen your case when filing a damage claim to the insurance company. It will also help you gain higher compensation than you will get by doing everything yourself.
3. How can you avoid an e-bike accident?
Here are a few tips on ensuring your safety while riding an e-bike and avoiding accidents.
Wear a helmet.
While this is the most basic safety tip, most e-bike riders often ignore wearing a helmet while riding. However, riding a bike without a proper safety helmet is incredibly dangerous. Research has shown that most e-bike accidents are due to the riders' negligence and not wearing the appropriate safety gear, which includes a helmet.
Use the e-bike lights.
Ensure that your e-bike is installed with proper lights if you are fond of riding your bike at night. Though most e-bikes have dinky reflectors mounted on them, making night traveling more manageable, it is still not enough. Hence, mounting at least one white light in the front and one red rear light is best to ensure safety and prevent accidents. Anything that makes your bike visible to others at night will help reduce the risk of getting into an accident with other vehicles.
Check your brakes.
It is essential to ensure that the brakes of your e-bikes are working every time you decide to go out for a ride. Double-check the brakes, so you do not get into a tricky situation while riding your electric scooter.
Do not ride while wearing earphones/headphones.
It is ridiculously dangerous to ride an electric bike while wearing your earphones or headphones in traffic. It will reduce your hearing capability while riding, and you might not be able to notice any speedy vehicle or honking coming your way. Therefore, it is better to be safe than sorry and avoid wearing headphones at the time if riding your electric motorbike.
Get used to low speeds at first.
Riding an e-bike fast is undoubtedly too much fun. However, riding at a certain speed requires experience and lots of practice before riding in actual traffic. You may sustain severe injuries if you try to ride your ebike faster, that too, without training. Therefore, you can avoid this by initially practicing riding at a lower speed and getting used to it. Gradually, once you become accustomed to the latter, you may increase your riding speed. Do not forget to wear a helmet at all times.
Ensure that the e-bike tires are properly inflated.
Well-inflated e-bike tires will offer a robust grip on your bike while giving you more control to increase your riding speed to avoid a collision. Hence, you must ensure that your tire treads are in good condition. Replace them if they are too old, as poor treads have higher chances of getting into an accident due to poor control of the e-bike.
Apply your brakes smoothly.
Braking your e-bike suddenly can have higher chances of colliding with a vehicle. Therefore, applying brakes smoothly and slowly is recommended, so the cars behind get some time to react. Furthermore, use the brakes on the rear side of your e-bike to prevent the scooter from tripping and throwing you in the front.
4. Frequently asked questions.
What common injuries can an e-bike accident cause?
An e-bike collision can cause many severe injuries, including:
Spinal cord injuries
Back injuries, etc.
Is a license required to ride an electric bike?
In most countries, such as the USA, you do not need a driver's license to ride an electric bike.
What is the most typical reason for an e-bike and a car collision?
The most common cause of an e-bike collision is the driver's careless behavior while riding the bike. Vehicle drivers usually become reckless and do not pay enough attention to the e-bikes on the road, which are more vulnerable and less visible in traffic.
As a result of accidents, people react differently and experience a great deal of stress. When you want to get reimbursed by the insurance, you will not only need to take care of your health and benefits but also deal with the administration and other processes. In addition to the paperwork involved in reporting the accident to the police, you'll have to show patience and time during this process. For this reason, you should consult a personal injury lawyer and an accident attorney who specializes in this area and will guide you throughout the entire process. Taking notes, photos, data, and other important information can help speed up the process. Also, it is very important to look after your health and well-being during this process and to remain patient.
You can also watch this video to learn more about the dangers of riding an e-bike and what you should know to avoid accidents. Click on the link to watch.