Getting hit by a car while jogging or running can be a traumatic experience. You might only suffer minor injuries if you’re lucky; however, many people hit by vehicles while jogging suffer serious injuries. Tragically, it’s common for joggers hit by cars to die due to the accident.
If you were hit by a car, you likely feel shaken up, confused, and not sure about what you should do next. It is expected to experience fear and anxiety after an accident. We’re here to help guide you through the process by providing a compassionate listening ear and practical steps on what you can do to heal and protect your legal rights.
If you were hit by a car or motorcycle while jogging, call our office for a free consultation at (617) 889-5000. We will review your case for free, explain your legal options, give you advice, and explain how we can help you recover compensation for your medical bills and injuries.
I Was Hit By a Car While Jogging: What Do I Do Now?
Jogging and running are great forms of exercise you can engage in year-round in Massachusetts with the proper gear. Something to be aware of, however, is that when you run, jog, or even walk along the roads or crossroads on your route, you are putting yourself at risk of being hit by a car.
There are many steps to take after being involved in a car crash. Most importantly, you must take care of yourself and get the medical attention you need. Secondarily, you want to protect your rights and know what you deserve after suffering through a tragic car accident and injury.
1. Call 911
The first thing to do, if you can, is to call 9-1-1 and report the accident. Give the dispatchers your location, and let them know what happened and that you will need medical attention. If the accident was not a hit-and-run crash, and the car that hit you is still on the scene, give the dispatcher as much information as possible about the vehicle. Tell them what type of car it is (a sedan, SUV, truck, etc.), what color it is, what brand or make it is, what model it is, if you know, and a license plate number if you can see it.
One thing to be aware of is that a driver who hit you may try to flee the scene. If you can, get the license plate number of the car. Take a photo if you can, or repeat it out loud a few times until you or someone else can write it down or even text it to yourself.
If the driver does stay on the scene, do not argue with them. You do not want to say anything that could put yourself in more danger or say anything that could be used against you later. Do get their license and insurance information while you wait for the police to arrive.
2. Get a Police Report
If you can stay on the scene to get a police report when police arrive, do so. Sometimes, you might not have a choice, depending on how seriously injured you are. But as long as you or a bystander call 911, the police officers who respond should create a police report.
A Massachusetts police report will document the accident and help you hold the driver who crashed into you accountable. The police report is an important part of filing an insurance claim or a lawsuit against the driver of the car who struck you.
The police report will help establish who caused the accident. Officers will get the name and contact information of the driver and be able to talk to any witnesses who are still on the scene.
Police will also be able to investigate the whole situation, and they will take the time to document the entire accident. They will try to find out if the driver was distracted, not paying attention, or if they were under the influence of drugs or alcohol. These would be tricky for you to find out and nearly impossible to find out after the fact. An investigation immediately after the accident is the best course of action.
3. Collect On-Scene Evidence
Again, this might be something you cannot do, depending on the severity of your injuries. If you can, however, you should collect evidence at the accident scene. You can take photos of yourself to document any visible injuries, take pictures of the car that hit you (especially if the vehicle has any damage), take photos of the street or area where the car ran into you, and more. You can also ask if anyone saw the accident and if they would be willing to tell you what they saw and what their name and contact information is.
4. Get Medical Treatment
Getting medical treatment right away is the most important thing to do if you are a jogger who got hit by a car in Massachusetts. Calling 911 is the fastest way to get medical attention, which is why you want to call 911 first. If the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) team arrives and determines that it is safe for you to be transported to the hospital yourself, then you can make that decision. But you should still get looked at on the scene of the accident and ensure you have help coming in case you need more serious, immediate medical attention.
Even if, for some miraculous reason, you “feel fine” after getting hit by a car while jogging or running, you still need to seek medical attention. Sometimes, injuries don’t appear until a bit later, once the adrenaline of the event wears off. Often, people will feel the most sore one day or a few days after an accident. Additionally, it is always possible that you could be suffering from an injury you can’t see – such as a concussion or even internal bleeding. If you were hit by a car in any way while jogging or running, you need to go get medical attention. Your life may depend on it.
You Need Medical Care After Being Hit By a Car, But You Shouldn’t Have to Pay for It
We understand that getting medical care can sometimes be daunting, especially if you don’t have good health insurance coverage or have a high deductible plan. When you are hit by a car as a pedestrian, however, you should not need to pay your medical bills out of pocket.
If you were hit by a car while jogging or running, your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage on your own car insurance policy will cover you even if you were hit as a pedestrian. Any PIP coverage will cover at least $10,000, if not more. To recover more than $10,000 for medical bills and to recover compensation for other losses like pain and suffering, you must file a claim or lawsuit against the person who hit you. If you do not have car insurance, there are other options. You could be covered under someone else’s insurance policy, such as a family member or someone you live with. If you are a student, for example, your parent’s or guardian’s car insurance policy may cover you. You also have the right to pursue compensation from the person who hit you.
A skilled personal injury lawyer will work with you to file a claim against the person who hit you. We will gather all the evidence needed to prove that the driver who hit you is responsible for the accident. Then, we will fight the driver’s insurance company for a fair settlement for you – one that covers your medical bills, expenses, and other losses. If the insurance company does not offer you a fair settlement, then we can file a lawsuit and take the case to court to fight for your rights.
5. Contact a Lawyer
The last thing to worry about after being hit by a car is contacting a personal injury lawyer with experience handling what are known as “pedestrian accidents.” Pedestrian accidents include being hit by a car while jogging, anyone being injured by a car or other type of vehicle while in a crosswalk, getting hit by a car in a parking lot, and much more.
A lawyer with experience representing joggers and runners hit by cars, such as Spada Law Group, should be your first call. You want someone who is not only experienced in the personal injury law field but who is also very familiar with your specific type of accident and injuries.
A skilled pedestrian injury lawyer can help connect you with further medical resources to aid your healing process. Personal injury lawyers often have a network of trusted physicians, physical therapists, chiropractors, and more to help you continue to receive whatever medical care you need.
Did you know that a personal injury lawyer is free to you? When you hire Spada Law Group to represent and fight for you, you don’t pay us anything out of pocket. We work on what is known as a contingency fee basis, which means that once we win your case, we take a portion of the settlement agreement or the trial verdict. We agree on this percentage together before we take on your case. But this means you can hire us at no out-of-pocket cost, and we only get paid if we win your case.
Don’t Speak to Insurance Companies – Even Your Own
If you were injured in a car crash as a jogger or runner, never talk to an insurance company after an accident. This is especially important to remember when the driver’s insurance company calls you. If an insurance agent contacts you after the accident, simply tell them you are hiring an attorney and don’t want to talk to them.
The driver’s insurance company will try to contact you to see if they can get you to admit you were somehow responsible for the accident or will even try to get you to dismiss the case altogether.
Sometimes, the driver’s insurance may call you and even offer you money to settle your claim right away. No matter what they offer, it will always be less than what you need and deserve. When you hire Spada Law, we take on your case at no cost to you to determine how much your case is truly worth, who was responsible for the accident, and how strong your case is.
Common Injuries Joggers and Runners Experience After Being Hit By a Car
You must get medical attention after any sort of crash or accident with a car while running or jogging.
Being hit by a car can cause serious personal injuries such as:
- Broken bones and fractures
- Head injuries, including concussions and traumatic brain injuries
- Neck, back, and other spinal cord injuries
- Internal Injuries
- Bruises, cuts, and scrapes
Many of these injuries are unseen, and symptoms might not appear immediately. However, especially in a pedestrian accident, many injuries can be life-threatening if not treated quickly.
If you were hit by a car or motorcycle, you should always seek medical attention after the accident.
Safety Tips for Massachusetts Joggers and Runners
Unfortunately, we can’t prevent every accident. But there are some ways that we can seek to be as safe as possible as runners and joggers to reduce the possibility of getting hit by a car while out for a run.
Time of Day
The time of day is an important factor, especially in Massachusetts as the days get shorter in the colder months. The majority of fatal pedestrian accidents, including joggers and runners who get hit by cars, happen in Massachusetts’ colder months from October through May. Less daylight and lower visibility play a big role in the increased likelihood of accidents. Sometimes the sidewalks are also not cleared after a snowstorm, or they are too icy for joggers, which leads more runners to run along the side of the road instead.
If you run or jog during dawn, dusk, or any time it is not daylight, take extra caution. Think more carefully about your running outfits, shoes, and visibility. A headlamp and a neon reflective vest are simple but highly effective ways to help ensure that drivers will see you while running.
If you run early in the morning or after sunset, consider getting a headlamp or another wearable, blinking light. This could make all the difference in helping a driver be able to see you whether you are crossing a street in a crosswalk, or running along the road or even on a sidewalk.
Plan your running outfits and purchases carefully. Wear bright-colored clothes and jackets if you can. You will also want reflective clothing, too. A simple solution is a neon-colored reflective vest or jacket. This way, you can have whatever type of running clothes you want, but also make sure you always have something to put on that will help drivers see you.
Many running tights and leggings also have options for reflective components on the legs, so look into options with reflectors built in.
Tell Someone Where You Are
Tell someone where you are going, and when you should be back. Send a text to a friend if you need to. Ideally, someone should also know your general running route in case something ever does happen, and they don’t hear from you or have contact with you. This way, someone will know where to find you if you’re hurt, and will know to call 911 if they can’t reach you.
Carry a Cell Phone
As annoying as a phone can be on a jog, it could be vital. Even if you’re not hurt by a car, you could always sprain an ankle or even become injured in another way in which you’d need to call someone for help. If you were ever hit by a car, you would also need your phone to call 911 and to take photos of the vehicle that hit you. Many sports bras or running tights now come with phone pockets, but you could also use a waist pack, an arm band, or even an Apple watch or other type of smartwatch that can make phone calls.
Plan Your Route
Before you go for a run or a jog, plan your route out. Think about the safest routes you could take. Try to take routes with sidewalks, running trails, or places that will separate you from traffic. Avoid areas with heavy, busy traffic as much as possible. Be aware of where you’ll have to cross streets and always take your time to do a safety check before crossing the street – even if there is a crosswalk, even if you have the walk signal, and even if you have the right-of-way.
Contact a Pedestrian Injury Attorney for a FREE Consultation if You Were Hit By a Car While Jogging or Running in Massachusetts
Pedestrian accidents, including joggers hit by cars, are among the most severe injury cases we see. They almost always result in serious injuries or even death. Getting hit by a car while jogging is challenging enough. You have doctor’s visits, possible surgeries, and physical therapy to manage so you can heal.
Navigating the legal process and dealing with insurance companies doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful.
If you or a loved one were injured by a car crash while jogging or running in Massachusetts, you have rights and may be able to get compensation for your medical bills, time lost from work, pain and suffering, and more. Our pedestrian accident attorneys are here to guide you every step of the way.
Over the last three decades, we’ve helped thousands of people in Massachusetts get the recovery they need after a pedestrian car accident injury. Recently, Boston Magazine named Attorney Spada one of Boston’s Top Personal Injury Lawyers. As personal injury lawyers, you never pay us a penny until we win your case. We’re here and ready to help.
We have three offices but proudly serve the entire state with the ability to meet with you remotely from the comfort of your own home. Contact us for a free consultation so we can learn more about your accident and injuries and see how we can help you get the recovery you deserve.