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What to do when you witness a motorcycle wreck

Watching a motorcyclist get wiped out on the road is a horrific experience. What's worse: Many people never even stop to help. Maybe they're afraid of getting hurt themselves, or maybe they simply don't know what to do -- but even one Good Samaritan can make a big difference to an injured biker.

If you want to be ready to respond appropriately to a motorcycle wreck in a way that could save someone's life and preserve their future, here is what you need to know:

  1. Call 911. The sooner you can get an emergency medical crew to arrive, the better. Motorcycle accident injuries are usually serious, and every second counts when it comes to a positive outcome.
  2. Make safety your top concern. Stop your vehicle in a place that is both out of the way of oncoming traffic and out of the way of the emergency vehicles that need to arrive at the scene. Turn on your hazard lights and make sure that you can safely approach the accident victim before you try.
  3. Don't move the victim or remove their helmet. Spinal and head injuries are common with motorcycle wrecks. Moving someone who has suffered either can actually do more harm than good. Let the trained paramedics handle this job. Instead, focus on communicating to the victim that you are present and that you've already alerted the authorities that they need help.
  4. Ask for important information. If the victim is able to respond, try to find out their name and any important information about their medical conditions or drug allergies for the paramedics.

Finally, stick around and make sure that you give your name and contact information to the police when they arrive. Since you witnessed the accident, you may be able to provide valuable insights about what happened. If the motorcyclist was injured due to another driver's negligence, they may be relying on witness accounts to help them pursue the compensation they need to make a recovery.

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