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In an ideal world, a driver at fault who hits and injures a cyclist will stop, admit fault and have insurance that will pay for the cyclist’s (likely expensive) treatment and property damage. But with 20,000 hit and run accidents each year in LA County, chances are good that you may find yourself the victim of harassment and/or a bicycle accident, with no evidence! When a driver leaves the scene of an accident, he takes with him all the evidence an injured cyclist needs to prove his case. So…Mount a video camera on your bike and/or helmet.
Several recent articles have documented the increasing utility of sports video cameras in helping injured and harassed cyclists attain justice and redress for their injuries. They capture the car, license, day and time, location, statements and even the driver (which is necessary). This information equips an injured cyclist (and her attorney) to bring that driver to justice, and get treatment and compensation for her injuries and property damage. Not convinced? Check out these articles in the New York Times, ABC and even YouTube for more.
Get Bicycle and/or Uninsured Motorist insurance. It’s no secret that cars are the biggest threat to cyclists on the road. If the driver of a car that hits you is at fault, you are entitled to the full cost of your medical treatment and payment for your pain and suffering. If the driver of the car that hits you is at fault and stops, their insurance will pay for your injuries. This is true whether or not you have medical insurance, and whether or not that insurance pays for your treatment. However, each year, the Los Angeles Police Department records about 20,000 hit and run accidents. Bicycle and UM insurance pay for your damages even if the driver who hit you left the scene, is uninsured, or has insufficient insurance to pay for the treatment of injuries. Your UM policy even covers you if you’re hit as a pedestrian! At least two providers sell insurance that covers your damages while riding your bike.