Last Updated on May 1, 2023 by asifa
No one likes to think about what-ifs such as truck accidents, but they do happen quite often in the U.S. Being involved in a truck accident is a complex situation, so it’s important that you have a plan in place. Knowing which steps you need to take in the aftermath will help you protect your case as well as ensure that your rights and legal options after a crash are preserved. With that in mind, here’s what you need to do in case of a truck accident.
Table of Contents
Contact police or emergency services
The first step you’ll need to take in case of a truck accident is to call police and/or emergency services. Getting a police report is crucial as it’ll help document the entire accident and keep records of the vehicles involved. Even if it seems like a minor accident, do it anyway. It’s also important you let the 911 dispatcher know how many vehicles are involved. That way, they’ll be able to send the number of ambulances needed.
In the same fashion, you’ll need to request a full medical evaluation. Again, even if you or any other passengers haven’t been injured seriously, let the emergency medical technician examine you. Sometimes, there won’t be any symptoms of injuries, but there could be internal bleeding, and seeking medical attention is imperative.
Contact a truck accident attorney
Truck crashes often result in injuries and truck accident lawsuits, but there are instances where the outcome is fatal. Just in 2018, there were almost 4900 large truck crashes in the U.S. that were fatal. Semi truck crashes are all too common in the U.S. too, with 500,000 of them occurring on a yearly basis.
According to Arizona attorneys, a typical semi truck accident in Arizona today is a result of speeding and using drugs. It can also result from driving for too long or driving a truck that’s overloaded. Whatever the reason for the accident you’re in, having an experienced truck accident attorney on your side is a must. They’ll assist you in holding the trucking company responsible and proving fault, which can be quite complex.
Contact your insurance company
After tackling the immediate needs, the next step in the process will involve getting in touch with your insurance company. This is something you can do without requiring legal guidance. Talk to the other drivers and exchange your insurance information such as insurance company and policy number. Then, you can file a report.
Other than talking to your own insurance company, you may end up talking to the insurance company of other drivers. In any case, you want to keep conversations to a minimum by stating the facts instead of going into details. The way your case turns out will be largely influenced by this step, so make sure you don’t skip it.
Document everything by photographing or videotaping the scene
Before the police arrive, you can help with the investigation yourself by documenting crucial information. Start by doing some investigation on your own, photographing or videotaping the scene – provided that it’s safe to do so.
Record any damage done to the truck and vehicles. Also, remember to take images of traffic signals, signage, roadway, surroundings, vehicle positions, as well as license plates. Make sure to document everything from different angles, providing both close-up shots and mid-shots. Photos and videos could serve as valuable pieces of evidence. For instance, they can give insight into what contributed to the truck accident. They’ll also come in handy for attorneys, first responders, as well as insurance companies.
Collect information from witnesses
Last but not least, you’ll need to document any important information from those who’ve witnessed the truck accident. Whether it’s a bystander or people nearby, it’s important that you gather information while the witnesses’ memories are still fresh. You can collect information on your own or you can get their contact information in case you need it. Once they leave the scene of the accident, you’ll have trouble tracking them down, so do it immediately.
Witness statements can come in handy in cases where they’re called upon in order to testify. Once you get their phone number, name, or email address, you can pass them to the police or your attorney.
Truck accidents can result in minor, serious, or fatal injuries. Sometimes, they require extensive medical attention, and other times, it is possible to walk away simply with some minor injuries. Nevertheless, knowing how to cope with this complex situation and the steps you need to take in the aftermath will help you be more prepared if such an accident occurs.
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