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Making a Claim Against Uninsured Drivers

Making a Claim Against Uninsured Drivers

Making a Claim Against Uninsured Drivers

 

It is estimated that every year there are over 1 million uninsured drivers on the roads in the UK. Even more shocking, is the fact that uninsured drivers are involved in more than 25,000 road traffic accidents each year.

Car insurance is there to protect people who are involved in road traffic accidents, as insurance makes sure that the driver at fault is able (through their insurance company) to cover the cost of any damage, loss or injury and help put the victims back in the position they were in, prior to the accident.

Valid car insurance is a mandatory requirement for motorists in the UK, it is illegal to drive without it. Yet sadly, thousands of drivers continue to take to the roads each year without insurance, putting others and themselves at risk.

It’s important to know that regardless of whether or not the driver at fault has insurance, you may still be eligible for compensation. Here at Bonnar Accident Law, we have significant experience handling these types of claims and can help you every step of the way.

How do I know if I’ve been hit by an uninsured driver?

It may happen that the other driver is upfront and honest with you. However, as driving without insurance is illegal, it’s, unfortunately, more likely that they will be reluctant or outright refuse to pass on their insurance information.

If the other party does refuse to give you any information, or you’re sceptical about the insurance information they have provided, you can check for yourself at the time of the accident by using the Motor Insurance Database (MID). There’s a small charge for a one-off search, but all you need from the other driver is their registration number and the MID will tell you instantly whether a vehicle is insured or not.

 What should I do if I’m hit by an uninsured driver?

If you are involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, it’s vitally important that you gather as much information and evidence as possible at the time. This includes

  • The registration, make and model of the vehicle
  • The date, time and location of the accident
  • The other driver’s name, address, contact details
  • Videos or photographs of the scene if possible, to back up your claim

We understand that, regrettably, uninsured drivers are less likely than most to stick around in the event of a road traffic accident. In this case, still take as much information as you can as this will help your case.

If you discover the other driver is uninsured, or if they refuse to give you their details or leave straight after the accident, you must notify the police. Refusing to give insurance information is as much of an offence as driving uninsured is.

Can I claim against an uninsured driver?

If you’ve been involved in an accident with an uninsured driver, you can claim through your insurance company only if you have fully comprehensive cover. Unfortunately, this means that if you only have a Third Party, Fire or Theft policy, you won’t be covered for claims against an uninsured driver regardless of whether it was your fault or not. Not to worry though, in this case, you can make a claim through The Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB).

MIB was set up to help drivers in the event they’re involved in a road traffic accident with an uninsured driver. MIB will carry out investigations, like an insurer, to establish the facts and may access police reports and witness statements, before they issue their response. There are certain criteria you have to meet, such as how quickly after the accident you file a claim, but they can assist you and may be able to compensate you in the absence of an insurance company. 

Here at Bonnar Accident Law, we can make a claim on your behalf via MIB and are well versed in dealing with claims against uninsured drivers.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors today.

Think Motorbike: Safety on the Road (Part Two)

 

Think Motorbike Safety on the Road

In January, we brought you part one of our Safety on the Road series: Think Bike, which explored the increased risk to cyclists as an increasing number of people take to their bikes as a cost-effective, healthy and environmentally friendly way to get around. In the first part of the series, we provided our top tips for how to stay safe.

This month we are focusing on motorcycle safety. Although motorcyclists only account for 1% of road traffic, they account for a staggering 19% of road users involved in fatal accidents.

Motorbikes are a popular mode of transport for thousands of people across the UK who get great enjoyment from the sense of adventure riding a motorcycle brings, alongside the financial and environmental benefits.

However, motorcyclists are amongst the most vulnerable road users, as in comparison to cyclists, motorcyclists travel at the same high speeds as cars, yet without any of the protective features, a car offers such as seat belts and airbags. As such, it means that if you’re involved in a road traffic accident on a motorcycle, you’re at considerably more risk of serious injury.

In this blog, we’ll explore the steps that motorcyclists can take to stay safe on the roads, as well as the steps other road users can take to play their part in making the roads safer for those who are most vulnerable.

 

Safety Tips for Motorcyclists

 

  • Suit up – the notorious motorcycle leathers are there not just to look stylish, but to protect riders as they can help to prevent serious injury. A DOT-approved helmet is also crucial.
  • Ride defensively by always staying as visible as possible. Make sure you avoid drivers’ blind spots, drive with your headlights on even during the day and wear high visibility clothing.
  • Look out for hazards on the road such as potholes so you can take the appropriate action to avoid these.
  • Avoid cycling in poor weather conditions these can seriously compromise your ride.
  • Obey traffic rules and speed limits, and always make sure to use your turn signals and hand signals.
  • Stay focused, as any lapses in concentration could have serious consequences. Likewise, make sure you aren’t driving impaired.

 

Safety Tips for Drivers

 

  • Look – failure to look is one of the top reasons for road traffic accidents between cars and motorcycles.
  • Pay particular attention to junctions and roundabouts.
  • Take extra care to check for motorcyclists when changing lanes, as a motorcycle may be in the space you’re moving into or be fast approaching it.
  • Leave plenty of space when overtaking a motorcyclist, as much space you would leave a car if not more, as motorcyclists often need to move suddenly to avoid dangers on the road such as potholes.
  • Be aware of Advanced Stop Lines. These allow increased visibility for vulnerable road users such as motorcyclists. You must stop at the first white line if the traffic light is amber or red and when the green light shows, allow the road user time and space to set off
  • The lower your speed, the less risk you are to a motorcyclist. As motorcyclists are more sensitive to changes on the road and can manoeuvre much quicker, if you’re behind or passing a motorcyclist, be sure to do so slowly and carefully.

 

If you do find yourself injured due to a motorcycle accident, you may be due compensation if the accident was caused by the actions of another road user, if the road was in poor condition, or if your injury was due to an equipment failure.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please feel free to get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.

Fatal Road Accidents: What Happens Next?

Fatal Road Accidents What Happens Next

If a loved one has been involved in a fatal accident, we understand that the thought of making a legal claim may seem impossible at what will already be an incredibly difficult time. Whilst there is no sum of money that will ever begin to compensate you for your loss, we understand that you may be worried about how you will cope financially going forward.

 

That’s why at Bonnar Accident Law, our experienced solicitors will always treat our bereaved client’s relatives with compassion and care.

 

Tragically there were 1,752 fatalities from road traffic accidents reported in the UK in 2019. We understand that behind each statistic, is a family dealing with the devastating aftermath. We have significant experience handling fatal road traffic accidents and we are here to help every step of the way.

 

Am I Entitled to Claim?

 

If someone else was at fault in causing the accident we can help you to claim compensation to ensure that you and your family don’t suffer any unnecessary financial hardship. The law allows close relatives of the deceased to make a claim, which can be any of the below:

 

  • A spouse or a former spouse
  • Civil partners of the deceased.
  • Children, grandchildren, adopted children and other descendants
  • Parents and grandparents of the deceased
  • Brothers and sisters

 

In certain circumstances, other relatives who were financially dependent on the deceased may also be entitled to claim.

 

What Does Compensation Cover in a Fatal Road Traffic Accident Claim?

 

The amount you could be awarded in a successful claim can vary greatly, as it’s very much dependent on a variety of factors.

 

  • Bereavement Award

This covers grief, distress and suffering for the loss of a loved one.

 

  • Actual Losses

This covers the expenses if you were caring for your loved one between their accident and the time of their passing such as any medical costs. It also covers the cost of the funeral and the legal cost of dealing with your loved one’s estate.

  • Loss of Earnings and Services

If you or your loved one were unable to work in the period between their accident and when they passed away the loss of earnings can be covered. Services include any duties your loved one may have performed such as childcare or caring for another family member.

  • Dependency Losses

If you and your family depend on the income of your loved one, the long-term financial loss will be carefully calculated to ensure the deceased dependents are financially supported in the future. This can include income, pensions and benefits.

 

How Can We Help?

 

Following a fatal road traffic accident, the police will have carried out a detailed investigation into the circumstances that caused the accident. We will gain access to these reports and speak to the police offers involved, whilst also instructing our own independent road accident investigators to review the police evidence and findings.

 

Here at Bonnar Accident Law, our solicitors have the expertise and experience to guide your family through the claims process step by step and we will work tirelessly to achieve the maximum amount of compensation for each family member who has a claim.

 

If you would like to discuss your options for making a compensation claim as a result of a fatal accident, please get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors today.

Working at Height: The Risks and Challenges

Working at Height The Risks and Challenges

Working at Height The Risks and Challenges

Working at height is defined as working in a place where a person could fall a distance liable to cause personal injury. A fall from a height can result in serious and life-changing injuries, anything from broken bones and mental trauma to irreversible damage to your internal organs.

 

Tragically, statistics from the Health and Safety Executive show that falls from a height accounted for the largest number of fatal accidents in the workplace in 2019/20.

 

Whilst these accidents are most commonly seen in the construction industry and cleaning industry, in any job where you are required to work from a height, however high or low that may be, you need to know the risks you face and the steps you can take to avoid them. We will examine these steps in this blog, and we’ve also included a handy guide to some of our key Do’s and Don’ts of working at height.

 

The Dangers of Working at Height, and How to Avoid Them:

  • Roofs

There are three types of roofs that present a particular risk when working at height; fragile roofs which aren’t structurally sound enough to support you or your equipment, sloping roofs which can present a serious challenge with maintaining stability, and flat roofs which present a risk due to their unsecured edges. To overcome the challenges of these roofs, we recommend using the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) and utilising both roof ladders and crawling boards where necessary.

  • Unsecured Edges

When working at height, unsecured edges present a significant danger not only to you, but to the people below who could be injured from the risk of falling objects. Ensure that before any work commences that walkways, access platforms and scaffolding all have the appropriate measures in place. Guard rails are often the most common choice to prevent this type of risk.

  • Weather Conditions

Bad weather can pose a serious danger to those working at height, especially strong winds which can make access more dangerous and could cause any unfastened materials, as well as your equipment, to come loose. Heavy rain or icy weather greatly increases the chance of you slipping as it impacts your stability. Although shelters can be formed and PPE can protect you from the elements to an extent, in poor weather we would always recommend postponing any work at height.

 

The Do’s and Don’ts of Working at Height:

  • Do check that everyone you are working with is fully trained and competent for working at height.
  • Do consider emergency situations and make sure access is safe to the workplace at height.
  • Do ensure that equipment is stable and strong enough for the job. Be sure to check this regularly.
  • Do take extra precautions when working on or near fragile services.
  • Do provide protection from falling objects.
  • Don’t overload ladders.
  • Don’t overreach on ladders or stepladders.
  • Don’t rest a ladder against weak upper surfaces.
  • Don’t use ladders for heavy tasks, only use them for light work and for a short period of time, usually for no longer than 30 minutes.
  • Don’t let anyone untrained or inexperienced carry out any work at height.

 

The Work at Height Regulations (2005) was introduced to help prevent injury or death caused by falls from a height. These regulations aim to minimise the potential risk to workers, and they place a duty of care on employers to ensure that they do everything possible to prevent employees from falling whilst a work, or carrying out risk assessments, and ensuring their workers are supplied with the appropriate equipment and training.

 

If your employer fails to take any of these precautions and you suffer an injury as a result, you may be able to pursue a claim for compensation.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please feel free to get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.

 

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrian Safety

 

Pedestrians are amongst the most vulnerable people on UK roads. Whilst there are many different methods of transportation that we can take advantage of, at one point or another, everyone is a pedestrian. Unfortunately, without the protection of a vehicle, or any safety equipment, pedestrians are vulnerable to serious injury. This can range from minor cuts and bruises to broken bones, to serious life-changing injuries.

 

Tragically, in 2019, pedestrians accounted for 27% of all road traffic accident fatalities in the UK, which was the highest proportion of any group besides car occupants.

 

Behind the statistics, are real people who are struggling with the consequences of being in a pedestrian accident.

Here at Bonnar Accident Law, we understand that if you or a loved one has been involved in an accident as a pedestrian, you may be facing distressing and uncertain times and might be unsure of what to do next. This blog will guide you through your next steps, as well as our top tips for staying safe as a pedestrian.

 

What to Do If You’re in a Pedestrian Accident?

  • Seek Medical Attention

Of course, the priority is to ensure that you’re out of harm’s way and that the emergency services have been called. Even in the case of minor injuries, it’s important to see your GP after in case your condition worsens.

  • Report the Accident

All road traffic accidents involving injury must be reported to the police and you should obtain a police report/incident number.

  • Take Photographs

If possible, take pictures of the scene of the accident, the surrounding area, and your injuries.

  • Collect Information

Make sure to exchange details with the driver/s involved in the accident, as well as anyone who might have witnessed it.

 

Our Top Tips for Pedestrian Safety

  • Stop, look, listen.
  • Stay alert, don’t be distracted by electronic devices such as your phone that can take your attention off the road.
  • Choose a safe place to cross the road, such as at a pedestrian crossing or traffic lights.
  • Even at a pedestrian crossing, always pause before you step onto the road and check both directions to ensure there is no oncoming traffic.
  • Don’t assume a driver has seen you. Always try where possible to make eye contact before you cross.
  • If there is a footpath, use it. If not, stick to the right-hand side of the road facing oncoming traffic, and keep as close as possible to the side of the road.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please feel free to get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.