Although some auto accidents are minor, those that involve large commercial trucks often lead to significant injuries, serious property damage, and even loss of life. With this in mind, what should you do at the scene of big truck accidents to protect yourself from liability?
Let’s discuss the steps you should take immediately after a collision involving a commercial truck, and what you should consider in the months after your accident. Here are the things that you should know from attorneys with experience working with accidents.
1. Stay at the scene of the accident and notify emergency services.
After an accident, it is important to stay at the scene of a crash. If you leave the scene without waiting for emergency services to arrive and fail to provide the other driver with your information, you can receive a hit-and-run charge in several states.
In addition to staying at the scene, you should also consider whether or not to move your vehicle. If your vehicle is not in a safe place, move it to safety. If you do not need to move your vehicle, you are injured, or the vehicle is undrivable, keep it where it is. This can help ensure your safety and preserve the evidence until an officer can inspect the scene.
Because accidents involving commercial trucks often lead to significant property damage and physical injuries, you should call 911. Let them know whether you need medical attention. If you are suffering from injuries, have another person, such as a passenger, complete the following steps while you seek medical attention.
2. Check for injuries and property damage.
Another aspect of seeking medical attention is to aid others if other people are suffering from injuries after a crash. This can involve the other driver, passengers in either vehicle, or even pedestrians.
In addition to securing medical attention for other parties, you should also assess the property damage resulting from your truck crash. Looking for property damage can alert you to potential safety hazards you can otherwise miss.
3. Collect photo and video, plus truck driver information.
After notifying the proper authorities and receiving medical attention for yourself or others, you should begin collecting evidence about the accident. This will involve:
- Receiving the other driver’s information. You should write down or take their name, contact information, driver’s license state and number, vehicle details, and insurance information. Other than collecting information, there is no need to speak with the other driver.
- Taking photographs of the road conditions, vehicles, injuries, and weather conditions.
- Taking videos of the aftermath. Alternatively, you can shoot a video or series of videos. From your video, you can take individual images. You can even use this video to take audio recordings that help you explain the details of your accident.
4. Contact your attorney.
After your accident, you have a limited amount of time to file a claim for damages against the other driver’s insurance company. This is known as the statute of limitations. Consult an attorney about your crash immediately after. Your attorney can start the investigation process, examine state laws and details pertaining to big truck accidents, and speak to insurance agents on your behalf.
5. Visit a doctor and follow your treatment plan.
The typical big truck accident leads to medical problems, some of which you might not identify at the scene. For this reason, it is important to go to the hospital immediately after an auto collision. Even if you or your passengers feel fine, you should all seek medical attention. Follow this up by doing as your physician directs.
Do you need help proving fault and winning damages in your big truck accident?
It’s important to act right away after you or a loved one suffers an injury from a truck accident. The best way to begin is by speaking with truck accident attorneys. There are several things you must prove to show that you were not at fault for an accident, and evidence gets harder to collect as time passes.
At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, our attorneys can help you build a case, collect evidence, and work with insurance companies. Contact us using the live chat feature on our website, or by phone at (561) 655-1990. We can schedule a free, no-obligation consultation and inform you of the next steps for proceeding with a case. Contact us now to begin.