The number of crashes involving trucks has continued to go up over recent years. Truck accidents can be especially fatal and truck drivers are presented with certain vulnerabilities that passenger car drivers don’t usually need to worry about.
Because of this, truck drivers need to be extremely aware of their surroundings at all times. Unfortunately, many truck drivers can end up driving for many hours over several consecutive days, leading them to encounter driver fatigue. This can greatly increase their chances of an accident.
If you’re involved in a truck accident, it’s important that you know what steps to take. This way, you can better protect your rights, your finances, and your health. So keep on reading and we’ll take you through everything that you’re going to want to know.
1Get Off the Road and Make Sure Everyone Is Okay
It’s a crime in every state to leave the scene of an accident that you were involved in. If you get into a truck accident, you need to stop your vehicle. If possible, you want to drive into a parking lot or to the side of the road.
The longer you stay in the middle of the street, the more likely you’ll cause more problems.
Once you pull over, you should inspect yourself to see if you’re injured. You also want to check on the other driver and see if they’re okay. If either of you is seriously injured, then it’s best that you call an ambulance and then do nothing as you wait for them to arrive.
If someone is injured, it’s best to leave them where they are until medical professionals can help them.
If you both are okay, it’s in your best interest to interact with them as little as possible. People can become very emotional and upset after an auto accident. There’s no need to get into an argument at such a difficult time.
You also never want to apologize to the other driver. Even if you think the accident was your fault, you simply don’t have all of the facts.
The other driver could have been texting, a traffic light might have been faulty, or some other issue outside of your control might have happened.
You can express empathy but don’t say that you’re sorry. If you apologize, you automatically imply guilt. And this can cause major issues for you later on.
2Call the Police
Most states require that you call the police if you’re involved in an auto accident. Most of the time, you want to call 911. If you’re on the highway, then the 911 dispatcher will transfer your call to the local emergency responders and local law enforcement agency.
You should tell the dispatcher approximately how many people were involved in the accident so that they know how many ambulances they should send.
Even if it’s just a minor accident, you still want to involve the police. A police report is the most efficient way for you to get immediate documentation of the accident. The police will also keep accurate records of all of the vehicles that were involved.
When the police come, they’ll get your information and the information of the other driver. You both will also get the opportunity to explain what happened.
If you hear the other driver saying something that you disagree with, don’t interrupt them. Calmly wait for the police to come to you and give them your side of the story. Make sure that they accurately take down all of the details you give them.
3Seek Medical Attention
Even if you don’t think that you’re hurt, you should get a medical evaluation for yourself. Sometimes, it can take days or even weeks for symptoms from an accident injury to show up.
The more time that’s between the accident and your doctor’s appointment, the harder it will be for you to connect the two. You also might end up experiencing something like internal bleeding, which can be difficult for an individual to know but a doctor can diagnose.
Even if you get examined by an emergency medical professional at the scene of the accident, you should still go to your doctor’s office or a hospital for a full medical evaluation.
You want to keep a record of your medical history, everything that your doctor says, and all relevant documents.
4Document the Evidence at the Scene
An accident scene can change very quickly. Because of this, you want to document the scene as soon as you safely can to get the most accurate representation of it. Of course, you don’t want to wander in the middle of the highway and endanger yourself.
You should take photos of the scene of the accident, the damage to the vehicles, and any possible injuries that you sustained. If your range of motion in your arm or leg has suddenly become limited, take a video.
Because you can quickly forget certain details, you should write down or record yourself recounting exactly what happened. Date the document too.
While people can forget or make things up, photos can’t lie.
5Hire a Truck Accident Lawyer
A truck accident lawyer will have the experience and skills to help you receive the compensation that you deserve. They can get you a good settlement and file a lawsuit for you too.
You want to work with lawyers who are specialized in truck accidents, such as the attorneys at Omar Khawaja (https://www.attorneyomar.com/truck-accidents/).
The Importance of Knowing What to Do After Being Involved in a Truck Accident
A truck accident can leave someone feeling disoriented and vulnerable. By knowing what to do after an accident, you’ll be better able to protect your interests.
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