Your bike accident survival guide by Affinity Enterprises
What should you do if you are in a bike accident?
Every year, thousands of bikers are involved in expensive (and sometimes life-threatening) accidents on South African roads. Affinity Enterprises gives some sound advice on steps bikers can take to protect themselves when it comes to bike-versus-vehicle accidents.
Love them or hate them, motorbikes are more than just a mode of transport. Motorbiking is growing exponentially in South Africa as more people have turned to motorbikes as their primary source of transportation because they are cheaper to buy, cheaper to run, and less expensive to keep fuelled than automobiles. However, motorbikes can be more dangerous than other forms of transport.
“Driving a motorbike requires more focus and brain function than driving a car,” says Murray Hewlett, CEO of Affinity Enterprises. “The act itself is both more physically and mentally draining than driving anything with four wheels. There are more variables and, therefore, more opportunities for error. It’s not like Murphy’s Law is synonymous with riding a bike, but when things go wrong on a motorbike, consequences can be exponentially worse.”
Adding to this, deteriorating road conditions and poorly maintained roads across South Africa mean bikers often have to contend with cracks in the road, gravel, sand, potholes, lack of street signs and road markings, and insufficient street lighting. SA’s unpredictable weather also creates a riding hazard.
According to the Motorcycle Safety Institute of South Africa’s 2017 accident statistics report, 641 bike accidents resulted in medical or law enforcement intervention in South Africa – that’s 12 a week, or almost two a day – resulting in 520 injuries and 166 fatalities.
Bike accident to-do list
Suppose you are involved in a bike accident. In that case, it is important to remember a few key things that could prove crucial when claiming from your vehicle insurance, as well as your medical insurance:
Record as much information about the accident as possible: Information you record about the accident will be useful as evidence to support a claim. Aim to record details of all vehicles and vehicle owners involved and take the names and contact numbers of any witnesses. Also, request the name and details of any police or traffic officers attending the scene.
Take photographs: If possible, and once you are in a position to do so, take pictures to document the accident. Photograph your injuries, damage to your bike, scene of the collision, and anything else that can be used as evidence to support your claim.
Seek medical attention: You should seek medical attention as soon after the accident as possible and notify your medical insurance provider of the accident. If transported to a hospital from the accident scene, remain in hospital until you are officially discharged (even if you believe your injuries are not serious).
Get a copy of the police report: In addition to consulting a doctor directly after the accident, you should get a police report. The report should include details of those involved in the accident, the vehicles involved, and their insurance information. The police report may also contain witness statements and observations made by the attending police officer/s.
Complete your treatment: After a motorbike accident, you should continue treatment and recovery for as long as a doctor recommends, including staying off work and avoiding specific tasks. You should follow all of your doctor’s instructions. Although the accident that gave rise to your injuries may not have been your fault, an accident victim must mitigate their damages – that is, to do their best to limit their losses. This would include medical advice and seeking appropriate treatment.
Precautionary Measures: Motorcyclists should always take safety measures when riding, such as wearing appropriate and visible protective gear at all times. Go-pro/helmet cameras are a welcome and increasingly used resource by motorcyclists. Often, the dispute around motorcycle-involved collisions relates to (the motorcyclist’s) visibility, and these camera recordings can be vital to resolving disputes and establishing who was at fault. The footage can be produced in a criminal or civil trial as evidence to be relied upon in establishing liability.
About Affinity Enterprises
Affinity Enterprises Holdings is a diverse and proudly South African financial services group operating nationwide from Gauteng. Affinity Enterprises believes in holistic development. The success of the Affinity suite of insurance products comes off the back of identifying operational and client-facing gaps in the insurance market. By repositioning and repackaging our products we have been able to sustain growth of 100% year-on-year.
Affinity Enterprises parents subsidiary companies that specialise in financial, healthcare and insurance-related services. One of which includes Affinity Health, which aims to provide premier quality, affordable medical insurance to South Africans, and strives to give clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service when they are faced with injury or illness.
Since the establishment of Affinity Health in 2011, Affinity Enterprises Holdings has been nurturing optimal value for its stakeholders, aligning our business objectives with a client-centric approach to product design and service delivery. The South African insurance market is highly competitive, driving innovation and value for consumers – a hallmark of this being market-changing product development; this is where Affinity Enterprises has excelled. Our Core Divisions include Health Insurance; Dental Insurance; Funeral Cover; Emergency Medical Services; and Integrated Emergency Response. Follow us on Facebook, or log onto our website.