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23 October 2022 | Comment | Article by Mark Robinson

What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident (UK)


Motorcycle accidents can happen in the blink of an eye and can be an emotionally and physically trying time for the parties involved. Riders may already know what to do after a motorcycle accident, but it is vital that everyone knows what to do immediately after the incident has occurred, and what follows.

Motorcycle accidents are unexpected and can cause confusion. Here, we detail what the protocol is for: what to do following the collision, if the police should be called, how to exchange motoring details, and what should be recorded at the scene.

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, Hugh James can help. Call our expert team on 0800 027 2557 or fill out our online contact form to arrange a call back at a time convenient for you.

Immediately after the incident

After the collision has occurred, it is vital that you stop the motorcycle as soon as possible; it is an offence to continue riding after an accident. The engine should be switched off and you should switch the hazard warning lights on as quickly as possible to alert other drivers on the road.

Check if you and any other passengers on the motorcycle have sustained any injuries. Make note of any injuries you or others have sustained and how severe they are, as passengers could potentially over-exaggerate their injuries later in order to make a claim. This will be easier to disprove if you remember to make note of injuries at the time of the incident. If anyone has been injured, you must call the police and ambulance services as soon as possible to ensure that those injured can be treated in a timely manner, and that the road is blocked off if necessary.

Try to remain calm. We know that a motorcycle accident can be emotionally and physically traumatic, but it is in your best interests to remain as calm as possible. Losing your temper can lead to rash decisions. Keeping a clear head allows you to think more clearly, so be sure to take a few deep breaths and try to take stock of the situation as best as you can.

Do not apologise or admit responsibility for the accident until you are completely aware of what has happened; this could protect you from liability later on if the incident was not your fault.

Exchanging motoring details

It is integral that all drivers involved in the accident exchange motoring details in accordance with motoring laws. Share your name and address with everyone involved, and ensure that you swap insurance information and details with the other driver(s). Take note of the details of passengers and witnesses to the event.

If possible, you should try and find out if the other driver(s) own the vehicle(s) involved in the accident. If they are not the owner of the vehicle, try to find out who the owner is and get their information also.

What should I record?

Knowing what to make note of after a motorcycle accident can be confusing, especially if you feel disoriented and stressed due to the collision. Take a look at what sort of information you need to make a record of after a motorcycle accident:

  • The time, location and date of the motorcycle accident.
  • The number plates of vehicles involved. It is also important to note the make, model and colour of the vehicle.
  • What sort of damage was caused to your motorcycle or the other vehicles. Taking photographs of the damage can help with your insurance claim later and disprove any false claims the other driver(s) may try to say you are liable for.
  • The names, numbers and addresses of those involved.
  • Any injuries that have been sustained during/after the incident.
  • Take photographs of the collision scene, including the positions of your motorcycle and the other vehicles involved.
  • It may also be helpful to make note of the driving conditions, lighting and road quality.

Should you call the police?

You may not think you need to call the police after an incident, but below are some instances where calling the police is the appropriate approach:

  • If the other driver involved in the incident drives away without giving any details.
  • If you believe that the other driver has no insurance.
  • If the other driver appears to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
  • If you suspect the other driver has caused the collision deliberately.

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident and require legal advice, our expert team is here to help. Call Hugh James on 0800 027 2557 or fill out our online contact form to arrange a call back at a time convenient for you.

Author bio

Mark Robinson is a Senior Associate in the Serious Injury Department in Manchester and specialises in motorcycle accident claims of the utmost severity and complexity. He understands that motorcyclists remain one of the most vulnerable road users and the effects of an accident are a genuine concern for the motorcyclist and their loved ones. Mark has assisted clients with life changing injuries including brain and spinal injuries, severe orthopaedic injuries and amputations.

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.

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