There are certain aspects of an accident involving a bicycle and a car that are different from one involving two cars. There is, of course, an obvious difference. Anytime a car or other motor vehicle hits someone riding a bicycle, the chances of an injury or death are greatly magnified. The following are a few things you should understand if this happens to you.
You should call for emergency assistance
When you are hit by a car, the chances of injury are much greater simply because you are exposed. You are not surrounded by metal like a car driver is. Not only can you be injured when struck by the car, but many injuries occur when you hit the pavement. When this happens, do not assume you are all right. Your instinct may be to get up, but don't assume you have no injuries. Either call or have another person call 911 emergency.
You should make a mental note of the vehicle and license plate
You may not remember the license plate, but at least make a mental note of what the car looks like. The vehicle's make and color will usually be enough. The reason for this is that a surprising number of drivers will leave the scene. A driver will seldom have a car that cannot run after this type of accident, and if they see you are not unconscious or bleeding, they may be tempted to flee. A police officer will often beat the paramedics to the scene, and you should be able to give a description so they can attempt to find the driver.
You are not necessarily at fault if you were riding in a crosswalk
In general, a bicyclist is subject to the same rules of the road as a car. However, if you are walking your bike in a crosswalk, you are a pedestrian. The problem arises when you are riding your bike in the crosswalk and are hit by a car. The first thing an insurance company is likely to point out is that since you were riding in the crosswalk, you are at fault for the accident. However, there are two things you should understand. Not every jurisdiction requires you to walk your bike in a crosswalk. Secondly, it is entirely possible that even when the law requires you to walk your bike, there can be comparative faults assigned. The accident can be so egregious on the part of the driver that you will be entitled to compensation.
Although you should always consult with an attorney after an accident, this takes on greater importance for a bicyclist. The type of injuries you can sustain can create long-term issues that may not manifest themselves right away. A bicycle accident attorney can help avoid a quick settlement from an insurance company that is far less than you are entitled to.